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JANUARY, 1876. 



Chemical History. — Much discrepancy has existed among observers 
in regard to the exact nature of the active principle or principles of 
Veratrum Viride. 

Thus, in 1838, Mr. H. Worthington announced that he had obtained 
from the plant u an alkaloid substance identical with veratria." 

And, in 1857, Mr. J* Richardson, after an elaborate examination 
of the subject, concluded that "not only in its physical characters, but 
also in its chemical actions, the alkaloid of veratrum viride is identical 
with veratria of the Veratrum sabadilla." (Amer. Journ. Pbar., 1857, 
p. 209.) 

In 1862, Mr. G. J. Scattergood announced that in addition to vera- 
trin, the plant contained another substance, similar in nature to that 
alkaloid, but insoluble in ether, and also a third substance, a resin to 
which the sedative action of the drug was chiefly due. (Ibid., 1863, 

P- 740 

So also, in 1864, Prof. S. R. Percy extracted from the plant an 
alkaloid, which he concluded had all the chemical properties of veratrin, 
from Veratrum sabadilla. (Prize Essay.) 

On the other hand, in 1865, Mr. Chas. Bullock claimed (Amer. 
'Journ. Pbar., 1865, p. 321,) that the alkaloid in question was not 
identical with veratria, as it did not respond to the sulphuric and hydro- 
chloric acid tests for that alkaloid; that the resin of Scattergood owed 
its activity to the presence of another alkaloid ; and that these two 
principles exhibited the same reactions with the mineral acids and with 
liquid reagents, the chief difference being in their fusing points and in 
that one was soluble while the other was insoluble in ether. Prof. Geo. 
B. Wood named these substances respectively veratroidia and viridia. 

2 Alkaloids of Veratrum Viride and Album. { Xm '^\^ rm ' 

In 1872, Dr. Peugnet [Med. Rec, May, 1872, p. 121) also concluded 
that the veratroida of Bullock was distinct from veratria, as it did not 
respond to the sulphuric acid test for that base, although it did to 
Trapp's test (hydrochloric acid). And he was the first to announce 
that Bullock's viridia was identical with Simon's jervia of Veratrum 

So, in 1874, Mr. C. L. Mitchell (Proc. Am. Phar. Asso., 1874, p. 
436,) obtained from this plant a base readily soluble in ether, which 
failed to fully respond both to the sulphuric and hydrochloric acid tests 
for veratria, and he therefore concluded that it was a distinct principle. 
Mr. Mitchell confirmed Dr. Peugnet's announcement of the identity 
of viridia and jervia. 

Much the same confusion has existed in regard to the principal alkaloid 
of Veratrum album. Thus, in 18 19, Pelletier and Caventou announced 
that the alkaloid of the plant was identical with veratria from sabadilla 
seeds ; whilst, in 1872, Dr. Peugnet claimed that the alkaloid was not 
veratria, but identical with veratroidia of Veratrum viride ; whilst still 
later, Mr. C. L. Mitchell claimed that it differed from both alkaloids, 
and proposed for it the name veratralbia. 

The question as to the identity, or otherwise, of these principles 
being a matter of considerable importance, especially in toxicological 
examinations, we have given the subject very careful study, and, as the 
result of repeated experiments, we find that both veratrum viride and 
veratrum album contain an alkaloid, which, when pure, in its behavior with 
the mineral acids and with liquid precipitants, fully responds to all the 
reactions of veratria or veratrin. 

Thus in the solid state, under the action of concentrated sulphuric 
acid, the alkaloid from both plants assumes a yellow color, and slowly 
dissolves to a yellow or reddish-yellow solution, which after a time 
becomes orange red and finally deep crimson with a purplish hue. If 
the mixture be gently warmed, the crimson coloration manifests itself 
at once. 

If the alkaloid is impure, at least, if it contains an apparently oily 
matter which adheres most tenaciously, it will strike a more or less red 
color with sulphuric acid and quickly dissolve to a reddish-yellow solu- 
tion, which after a time acquires a more or less brownish-red color, 
but fails to assume the crimson coloration of the pure alkaloid. The 
presence of pure jervia in very minute quantity does not appear to 
materially interfere with the normal reaction of the alkaloid with this 

Am 'ja°n Ur i8 P 7 6 arm '} Alkaloids of Veratrum Viride and Album. 3 

The claims, as we have already seen, that the alkaloid in question 
from the three different veratrums was not the same, has been based 
chiefly upon the behavior of the product obtained with concentrated 
sulphuric acid ; and also in part upon its behavior with hydrochloric 

It may here be stated, that several years since we received of Dr. 
Percy, of New York, a small sample of the alkaloid prepared by Mr. 
Scattergood, of Philadelphia, from veratrum viride, which yields color 
reactions with sulphuric and hydrochloric acids, identical with those of 
pure veratria, when compared side by side with that alkaloid. 

It has also been claimed that " veratralbia " differed from "veratria 
and veratroidia," in that its solution failed to yield a precipitate with 
chloride of platinum. But we find that solutions of each of the 
so-called different principles, when of the same strength and under 
like conditions, if not too dilute, will yield precipitates that in no way 
can be distinguished. 

Preparation of the Alkaloids : — For the preparation of the alkaloids of 
veratrum viride, a fluid extract of the root, prepared by Sharp & Dohme, 
of Baltimore, was employed throughout our examinations. After a 
number of experiments the following method was adopted : 

The fluid extract, acidulated with acetic acid in the proportion of 
fifteen minims per fluidounce, is added with constant stirring, to eight 
volumes of pure water, — the mixture allowed to stand 24 hours, or at 
least until the precipitate has completely subsided, and the liquid then 
filtered. The clear, yellowish filtrate is concentrated on a water-bath 
to something less than, or even to one half, the volume of the fluid 
extract employed, when it is allowed to cool and again filtered. 

The filtrate thus obtained is treated with slight excess of carbonate 
of sodium, which will throw down a voluminous precipitate of the 
mixed alkaloids. This mixture is agitated with about its own volume 
of ether, which will readily take up the precipitate. After decantation 
of the ether, the alkaline fluid is washed with a small quantity of fresh 
ether, which in its turn is decanted. 

Although jervia in its pure state, when precipitated, is only very 
sparingly soluble in ether, yet under the above conditions, it is very 
freely soluble in this liquid, 100 fluidgrains of the liquid readily 
taking up between two and three grains of the mixed alkaloids. In 
its crystalline state, the alkaloid appears to be wholly insoluble in this 


Alkaloids of Veratrum Viride and Album. { Am - jZ'Ifr™' 

The ether employed in most of the present examinations was of sp. 
gr. 0.725. 

The ether employed for the above extractions, is allowed to evapo- 
rate, small portions at a time, in a rather deep, thin glass capsule, and 
the resulting residue dried in a water-oven. 

The outer or upper portion of 
the residue thus obtained, will con- 
sist chiefly of the veratria, in the 
form of a transparent, more or less 
yellowish, vitreous mass, in which, 
under the microscope, may be 
found some scattered crystals of 
jervia : in drying, this portion of 
the deposit generally separates, in 
part at least, from the sides of the 
capsule, in the form of transparent 
scales. The central or inner por- 
tion of the deposit will consist 


tion. 30 diam. chiefly of the jervia, in the form 

of bold groupes of crystals. Fig. 1. About two grains or something 
more of residue will be obtained for each fluid ounce of the fluid 
extracts employed. 

For the separation of the alkaloids, the dried residue is treated with 
a little water strongly acidulated with hydrochloric acid (1:10), which 
will readily dissolve the veratria, whilst the jervia will be converted 
into the insoluble chloride. The quantity of acidulated water thus 
employed may be in the proportion of about a fluid drachm for every 
two grains of residue. 

This mixture is transferred to a small, moistened filter, and, if 
necessary, the filtrate returned to the capsule until the whole of the 
insoluble matter is transferred to the filter, which is finally washed 
with a little acidulated water, and reserved for the recovery of the 

The alkaloid in the filtrate may be further purified by washing the 
acid solution with ether, precipitating by sodium carbonate, and then 
either taking up the precipitate by ether or collecting it on a filter and 
washing, these operations being repeated, if necessary. On precipitating 
with sodium carbonate, a notable quantity of the alkaloid remains in 
solution, and may be recovered in a quite pure state, by extracting the 

Am 'jrz8 P 7 6 arm "} Alkaloids ofVeratrum Viride and Album. 5 

filtrate with ether. In its pure state, as left by ether and pulverized,, 
the alkaloid forms a pure white, sparkling powder. 

For the recovery of the jervia, left on the filter in the form of 
chloride, the deposit, being first pulverized, is boiled for some time, with 
a solution of carbonate of sodium, the mixture transferred to a filter, 
and the residue washed with a little water. The washed residue is 
treated on the filter with a little water strongly acidulated with acetic 
acid, by which the liberated alkaloid will be dissolved. The filtrate 
thus obtained will usually be more or less turbid ; but by returning it 
to the filter, it may be obtained clear. 

The jervia is now thrown down form the filtrate by slight excess 
of carbonate of sodium, and the precipitate extracted by agitating the 
mixture with chloroform, which on evaporation will leave the alkaloid 
in the form of a hard, transparent, amorphous deposit. On moistening 
this residue with a few drops of water, containing a drop or two oi 
alcohol, it will quickly be converted into a white mass of groups of 
crystals of the pure alkaloid. 

A portion of both alkaloids is retained by the resinous matter separ- 
ated from the original aqueous mixture of the fluid extract, and may be 
recovered by boiling the powdered mass with water strongly acidulated 
with acetic acid. 

The alkaloids from veratrum album were obtained by extracting the 
powdered root with water containing acetic acid, treating the concentrated 
solution with carbonate of sodium, and taking up the precipitate by ether, 
in the manner already described. The ether extract of the mixed 
alkaloids left the jervia in the same crystalline form as obtained from 
veratrum viride. 

Reactions of Jervia : — Sulphuric acid causes pure jervia to assume a 
yellow color, and slowly dissolves it to a yellow or faintly reddish-yel- 
low solution, which after some minutes acquires a beautiful bright 
green color. A very minute quantity of the alkaloid will exhibit this 
coloration. After a few hours, the green color thus produced disap- 
pears, and a dirty white or brownish precipitate separates. 

This acid produces similar results with the chloride, sulphate, and 
acetate of the alkaloid, when in the solid state ; but it dissolves the 
nitrate with the production of an orange -red color, which is permanent 
for at least some hours. 

Nitric acid quickly dissolves the alkaloid to a colorless solution, which 
after a time acquires a more or less rose or pinkish hue. 

Alkaloids of Veratrum Viride and Album. {^^iw**™' 

Hydrochloric acid fails to produce any marked coloration or to dissolve 
the pure alkaloid, immediately converting it into the chloride, which is 
insoluble in the presence of the free acid, although somewhat soluble 
in pure water. 

The foregoing mineral acids occasion the following reactions with 
one grain of a i-iooth solution of the alkaloid, in the form of acetate : 

I. Sulphuric acid, dilute (1:5), 
produces an immediate turbidity, 
and in a few moments a dense 
dull-white amorphous precipitate, 
which soon becomes more or less 
granular. After a time, the de- 
posit consists of more or less cir- 
cular, nodular masses, and espe- 
cially along the margin of the de- 
posit, fine groups of long, very 
delicate crystalline needles. Fig. 2. 
These circular masses generally 
appear, under the microscope, of a 
75 diam. brownish color. The reaction of 

this acid is quite peculiar to this alkaloid. 

2. Nitric acid of sp. gr. 1.20, 
occasions an immediate, copious 
precipitate, which in a little time 
becomes converted into nodular 
masses, some of which are spinated. 

If the jervia solution contains 
excess of free acetic acid, espe- 
cially if a minute drop of this acid 
be added after the reagents, the 
precipitate soon becomes convert- 
ed into a mass of crvstals of the 
forms illustrated in Fig. 3. 

Nitrate of Potassium* produces 


with a neutral (i-iooth) solution acid. 75 diam. 


This reagent has been proposed as a valuable test for the alkaloid by Mr. Chas. 
Bullock, in a paper in the October number of this Journal, which came to hand 
about the time we had completed our examinations. 

Am 'jan. r is P 7 6? rm "} Alkaloids of Veratrum Viride and Album. 7 

of the alkaloid, an immediate turbidity, and after a little time, a quite 
good deposit of granules and crystalline masses. In the presence of 
free acetic acid, this reagent produces much the same results as free 
nitric acid. 

3. Hydrochloric acid produces an immediate, copious, dull-white 
amorphous precipitate, which becomes more or less granular. 

4. Bromine in bromohydric acid throws down from solutions of the alka- 
loid, a dense, curdy, yellow precipitate, which is readily soluble in alcohol. 
On spontaneous evaporation of the alcoholic liquid, the deposit is left 
in the granular form. 

5. Platinic chloride produces a deep yellow precipitate, which 
becomes lighter in color, and more or less granular. 

6. Auric chloride occasions a light yellow, curdy precipitate. 

Jervia is also precipitated by other liquid reagents, but the reaction, 
like the last three mentioned, are common to a large class of substances. 

Recovery of the Alkaloids from complex mixtures. — The following 
experiments were made in order to determine in how far the alkaloids 
could be individually recovered from complex mixtures : 

Exp. 1. Cat. — Two drachms of the fluid extract of veratrum viride 
were administered to a half-grown cat. The animal was immediately 
rendered prostrate, and was dead in about one minute after the adminis- 
tration. As a quantity of the fluid extract escaped from the mouth of 
the animal, we have doubts if more than one drachm reached the 

The Stomach. — The contents of the stomach, with the cut-up tissue 
of the organ, were strongly acidulated with acetic acid, the whole made 
into a liquid mass with water containing its own volume of alcohol, and 
the mixture digested at a moderate heat for half an hour. The liquid 
was then strained, concentrated, again strained, and finally reduced to a 
small volume and filtered. 

This filtrate was treated with slight excess of carbonate of sodium, and 
the mixture extracted with ether. The deposit left on evaporating the 
ether, contained a large number of groups of crystals of jervia, and 
the margin was of a resinous character, and also contained small 

The residue was treated with a little water containing hydrochloric 
acid, and the alkaloids separated in the manner already described, the 
chloride of jervia being collected in a small filter. 

8 Alkaloids of Veratrum Viride and Album. { Km ']°™^™' 

The second ether extract of the veratria furnished the alkaloid in a 
sufficiently pure state to yield very satisfactory results with the sulphuric 
acid test. 

The final residue of the jervia, consisted of a mass of crystals of the 

The Blood. — Seven drachms of blood were recovered from this 
animal. This fluid was treated with six drops acetic acid, its own 
volume of alcohol and a somewhat larger quantity of water, and the 
whole violently agitated for some minutes in a bottle. 

The mixture, transferred to a dish, was digested at a moderate heat, 
then strained, and the solids washed. The strained liquid was concen- 
trated, again strained, and these operations repeated until the liquid was 
reduced to about half a fluidounce, when it was filtered. 

The filtrate, after addition of carbonate sodium, was extracted with 
about an equal volume of ether, and this liquid evaporated, small 
portions at a time, in a small capsule. A careful examination of the 
residue left by the ether, failed to discover any crystals. But on treat- 
ing the residue with a few drops of diluted alcohol, and gently evapo- 
rating the liquid, a number of small crystals and crystalline groups, of 
the forms shown in the lower portion of Fig. I, were found in the 
resinous or outer portion of the deposit. 

The central portion of the deposit was now dissolved by treating it 
with a very small quantity of water acidulated with acetic acid, — care 
being taken not to disturb the resinous portion of the deposit. For 
detaching and effecting solution of the deposit in this operation, a small 
feather, or, better still, a small flattened pencil of rubber in a glass 
handle, will be found useful. The quantity of the alkaloids present 
under these conditions, is too minute to permit of separation in the 
manner previously described. But as the jervia is rather readily taken 
up by the acidulated water, whilst the veratria, as deposited, is but 
slowly acted upon by the liquid — they may in very great part be thus 

The liquid, which now contained the greater part of any jervia 
present, was decanted, treated with a little carbonate sodium, and the, 
mixture extracted with ether, which on evaporation left an amorphous 
residue. On moistening this with a few drops of diluted alcohol, and 
evaporating the liquid, the residue, distributed over a space nearly an 
inch in diameter, was found to consist of a mass of small crystals of 
iervia, of the forms and as thickly distributed as shown in Fig. 4. 

Am 'j j a°n ur i876. arm '} Alkaloids of Yeratrum Viride and Album. 

FIG. 4. 

75 DIAM. 

On further purifying the resin- 
ous matter left in the capsule, it 
furnished, under the action of con- 
centrated sulphuric acid, very good 
evidence of the presence of vera- 

Exp. 2. Dog. — Between two 
and three drachms of the fluid ex- 
tract were administered to a dog, 
weighing about thirty-five pounds. 
The animal was soon seized with 
violent vomiting and retching, suc- 
ceeded by purging and discharge of 
urine. Two hours after the admin- 
istration, there still being very active symptoms, the animal was killed 
by a blow upon the head. The stomach of this animal was not exa- 

The Blood. — Three ounces of blood carefully taken from the femoral 
artery of this animal, were acidulated with acetic acid, violently agitated 
with a mixture of water and alcohol, and the mixture treated in the 
same manner as the blood from the cat, — the final solution being 
reduced to 375 fluidgrains. 

This solution, after addition of carbonate sodium, was extracted 
with 200 fluidgrains of ether, and finally washed with a little of that 

Ten fluidgrains of the ether first employed, when allowed to evapo- 
rate, left a residue containing a large number of minute crystals of jervia. 
On evaporation of the whole of the ether employed, another crop of 
crystals was obtained, and the margin of the residue was of a resinous 

On separating the different portions of the residue by acidulated 
water and treatment in the manner already described, perfectly satis- 
factory evidence of the presence of both alkaloids was obtained. 

The quantity of veratria recovered in this instance seemed to be 
greater than in the case of the cat, whilst that of the jervia seemed to 
be less. 

Of all the alkaloids, there is none, according to our experience, so 
readily recovered in its crystalline state from the blood, when carried 

io Pharmacists, Physicians and Nostrums. { Km 'jlt r ;^ m ' 

there by absorption, as jervia. We have elsewhere (Micro chemistry 
of poisons) cited some cases in which we recovered veratria from the 
blood of animals killed with the commercial alkaloid. 
Columbus, O., Oct. 20th, 1875. 




It is with much reluctance that I have accepted an invitation to pre- 
pare a brief rejoinder to recent articles in some medical journals on the 
mutual relation of physicians and pharmacists, and on the nostrum 
traffic, which more or less bear the traditional stamp of disregard or 
misconception of the real relations existing between these two comple- 
mentary professions at this time, when the rapid strides in the advance, 
as well as in the application, of their constituent sciences are more and 
more shaping their true scope and sphere in the health service. 

On the surface of these articles there are three main points of dis- 
pute, namely : the sale of nostrums, the alleged prescribing by phar- 
macists, and " the propriety for physicians of sending prescriptions. " 

1. The nostrum traffic has attained such dimensions that, according 
to reliable statistics,* two-thirds of the total quantity of medicines an- 
nually consumed in the United States, are dispensed in the form of 
nostrums. When we inquire for the causes of this remarkable fact, in a 
country which can boast of one regular practitioner of medicine to 
every 600 inhabitants, looking aside from those thinly-settled regions 
whose population is scattered widely apart, where medical aid cannot 
be had readily and at all seasons of the year, and where for want of 
recognized family medicines or generally approved formulas for house- 
hold remedies, the people as yet have recourse largely to nostrums ; 
there are three alternatives obvious : first, that a large number of 
the nostrums really possess so much merit and have secured so much 
credit, as to offer, in all ordinary cases, a satisfactory substitute for 
average medical skill, as it can be obtained at present ; or, secondly, 
that this latter is largely regarded as so far inferior or disproportionate 
in price to the actual or fancied benefit derived from nostrums, that 
experience and fact have secured for the " infallible " cure-all a greater 

*" Boston Medical and Surgical Journal," August, 18745 and "Amer. Journ. 
Pharm September, 1874, p. 445. 

Am j™J%; rm } Pharmacists, Physicians and Nostrums. u 

confidence than is felt in the fallible doctor ; or, thirdly, that the 
public, who annually spend so many millions of dollars more for nos- 
trums than for doctors, must greatly lack in common sense and 

The pharmacist, as far as the nostrum traffic is concerned, is but a 
merchant ; he occupies a neutral ground, and cannot, if he would, 
regulate it. His personal inclination or preference has just as little to 
do with the merits or demerits of nostrums as it has with those of the 
doctor ; nor have pharmacists, in general, any influence upon the 
choice of the public between either of them, although their preferences 
as well as material interests are certainly in favor of the latter ; and, 
moreover, they suffer by the alleged degeneration of their profession 
into a mere trade, much more than the physicians do, or than is gener- 
ally known. It is not in their power, however, to change the law of 
demand and supply, nor can this be accomplished by statutes, forbid- 
ding or endeavoring to control the sale and use of nostrums, or the 
choice of remedies, doctors, or methods of treatment, by the people, any 
more than it is possible to protect the community in that way from the 
evidently large numbers of insufficiently educated, incompetent " and 
unskilled, yet regularly-graduated, physicians,"* nor restrain these from 
experimenting on the health and life of the afflicted, who, in many 
cases, have no chance to obtain an approximately correct estimate of 
the qualification of the physician or to discriminate between the edu- 
cated one and the pretender, and, still less, have any means of detect- 
ing incompetency and malpractice until, perhaps, it is too late, and a 
valuable life has been sacrificed. f 

So long as medicines in the form of nostrums and specialties are 
bought and used, it is, no doubt, safer that they should at least pass 
through the hands of a trade which is competent to exercise a kind of 
control over the character of that particular class of ready-made medi- 
cines. As long as pharmacy can uphold its present scope, its legitimate 
business should continue to embrace the dispensation to the public of 
all those products of nature, manufacture or art, which serve as remedies 
or are used for sanitary or domestic application, no matter what so-called 
school of medicine employs them, or in what shape or preparation they 

* Dr. H. C. Wood, Jr., " Medical Education in the United States/ 1 in " Lippin- 
cotfs Magazine, 11 December, 1875, P- 7°3 3 an(1 "Philadelphia Medical Times, 11 
January 23d, 1875. 

f" New York Daily Times, 11 July 17th, 1875. 

12 Pharmacists, Physicians and Nostrums. { Am j{° ur ^ rm 

are called for and retailed. If pharmacists should drop the nostrum 
traffic, as unwisely insisted upon by some medical journals, or should 
deliberately deliver to other branches of trade the sale of natural or 
artificial mineral waters, the keeping of homoeopathic pellets or other 
articles which by long usage, have been associated with the drug trade 
as it has developed, outside of pharmacy proper, and, perhaps, against 
the preference and interests of the pharmacist, the result would certainly 
not be a decrease in the demand and use of nostrums, mineral waters, 
sugar pellets, fancy medicines, including elixirs, tonics, medicated candies, 
etc. ; — their sale would only pass into less qualified hands. The nostrums 
and kindred specialties would pass from the show-windows and shelves 
of the drug stores to those of the grocer, fancy-dealer, confectionery 
store, etc., and would there, but with greater eclat, bear evidence of the 
fact how much more confidence a large part of the American people 
place in their familiar cure-all nostrums than in the skill of the average 

Unbecoming and discreditable, as is the association of the nostrum 
trade with pharmacy, yet, generally speaking, the choice of the smaller 
evil from the two alternatives forced upon the pharmacist, justifies him, 
in the interest of the public, in retaining, and, as far as possible, controling 
the trade in medicines, in whatever legitimate form they may appear in 
the market. The correctness of this view is sustained by the fact, 
that it is practically applied in countries whose sanitary regulations are 
very strict and are regarded as models of wise and adequate legislation. 
With the increase of travel, the American quack medicines have fol- 
lowed the large annual exodus of our substantial classes to Europe, and 
many of our popular nostrums, in consequence of the great demand, 
have been introduced on the continent of Europe and in Germany,, 
where medicines are not admitted to patent-rights ; but no sooner had 
the demand called forth their importation, than the Imperial govern- 
ment promptly enacted a statute, confining the exclusive trade in this 
kind of " Yankee notions " to the apothecaries, in order to submit 
them, as far as practicable, to the control of a competent and critical 

For the present, therefore, it may be safest for pharmacy to embrace 
in its scope every legitimate system and mode of dispensing and reta il 
ing medicines, while the attainments and character of the pharmacist 
should ever remain a criterion and a safeguard both to the public and 
the physician, and should prevent him from countenancing imposture 

km 'j™*ilt£ rm '} Pharmacists, Physicians and Nostrums. 13 

or fraud. On the other hand, as already stated, it should fairly be 
taken into consideration that the nostrum-traffic has been forced upon 
him, and that he, as a rule, takes an adverse position, only supplying 
the demand ; as also, that the pharmacist has no right to influence the 
choice of the customer between the physician — allopath or homoeopath 
— or the familiar nostrum, unless called upon for his opinion. 

Moreover, every well-informed person knows that the nostrum traf- 
fic cannot effectually be restrained merely by the favor or disfavor of 
pharmacists any more than by that of physicians, and that the use of 
nostrums is by no means confined to the non-educated portion of the 
community, but that it prevails largely among the wealthy classes, both 
at home and abroad ; as also, that among the patrons of this class of 
medicine, as the prescription file of the drug stores throughout the 
country will testifv, may be numbered not a few physicians of good 

But when we come to the bottom of the question, and inquire with- 
out bias for the primary cause of the origin and great success of the 
nostrums in our country, we cannot but lay a very great part of it at 
the door of the medical profession at large, or, perhaps, attribute it, 
ultimately, to the want of adequate laws for the regulation of the meth- 
ods and standard of medical education and the requisite qualification for 
admission to the practice of medicine by physicians. The fact is that 
nostrums, to a very large extent, have supplied an actual want, in con- 
sequence of lack of trustworthy medical aid and of confidence, on the 
part of the community, in the qualification of a large number of physi- 
cians. This want has opened many a door to nostrums in preference 
to the doctor, and has contributed much to raise this traffic to its pres- 
ent extent, almost exactly in proportion with the increase in numbers 
and the decrease in qualification and public trust in the average doctors, 
a large portion of whom " have attained and still acquire their training 
and engage in practice under the absurd notion that a medical education 
can be acquired in two winters, and in many cases, even without 
a preliminary grammar school education. "* It is therefore no wonder 
that in the choice between the cure-all nostrums, or the pellet and drops 
of the homoeopath, or a multitude of unqualified practitioners, not to 
s peak of the pretenders and impostors, the public frequently give pref- 
erence or a first trial to the harmless sugar pellet or the familiar nostrum, 
and that two-thirds of the entire amount of drugs and medicines annually 
consumed in our country, are bought and used in the form of nostrums. 
*Dr. H. C. Wood, Jr., " Lippincott's Magazine," December, 1875, P- 7°5- 

14 Pharmacists, Physicians and Nostrums. { Am - j J a n. r ; 8 ^6f rri1 ' 

Nor is it strange that among the large class of educated, conscientious 
and high-minded physicians, who have more or less to suffer * by the 
iniquities of unworthy competitors, and who keenly feel the disgrace 
which these reflect upon the profession at large as well as among the 
public, the demand for adequate legislation f is increasing, in order 
" to check the unbridled license of the lower class of practitioners, and 
to protect the community against the disastrous activity of a multitude 
of untrained and reckless, yet regularly graduated, practitioners."! 

That the public apply to the pharmacist for their supply of medicines 
of their own selection, is but an evidence of the superior trust which he 
possesses in the general regard of the people, who are well aware of 
the fact that American pharmacy, by its own exertion and energy, has, 
of late, raised its status much nearer to the European standard. Nor 
is that all ; it is still advancing quietly and without any presumption, 
indeed, but with such success that empiricism and incompetency, so 
largely prevailing, and, as generally admitted, on the increase, among 
physicians, are more and more falling into oblivion among pharmacists. 

Under these circumstances, medical writers should exercise due 
regard and discretion in criticising pharmacists in their legitimate 
attempt to check and relieve an evil, whose magnitude is largely the 
consequence of the shortcomings of a great part of the physicians of 
the land. The present move on the part of pharmacists to counteract 
the use of nostrums, by instructing the people, by means of an annual 
almanac,§ in regard to their composition and danger is, perhaps, the 
wisest method. It has been successful in other countries, and is, at 
least, worth a trial here ; while in regard to the before-mentioned 
causes of the success which the nostrums have attained in our 
country, as substitutes for medical aid, it is certainly the most discreet 
and forbearing means within the reach of the pharmacists. They, of 
course, are well aware of the incompleteness of their effort, as they 
cannot expect a sweeping change so long as the shortcomings and 
disqualification of so large a portion of practitioners continue to 

* Dr. Wm. T. Edgar, President's Address before the Medical Editors' Association. 
" St. Louis Medical and Surgical Journal," May, 1875, P- 2 3 x - 

f Dr. Stephen Smith. " Public Health Service and Medical Education ; v an ad- 
dress before the American Public Health Association. " New York Daily Times," 
November 13th, 1874. 

X Dr. H. C. Wood, Jr., " Lippincott's Magazine," December, 1875, p. 711. 

\ The Popular Health Almanac, edited by Fred. Hoffmann. 

Am j J a°ri ir i876 harm '} Pharmacists, Physicians and Nostrums. I 5 

diminish confidence in the unexceptional qualification of the medical pro T 
fession at large, and tend to drive the public to other means of relief, and 
among them, especially,to nostrums. 

2. The charge upon pharmacists of the alleged practice of prescrib- 
ing, or advising and dispensing medicines on their own account and 
responsibility, when called upon to do so, is one which medical men 
occasionally like to indulge in, and in which they draw largely on 
their own imagination, and put all the real or* fancied facts deliberately 
to one side. The fact is, that the choice of the methods or agents to 
be employed in the maintenance or restoration of health, and the 
inquiry for, as well as the imparting of advice as to remedies and their 
application or use, as well as the sale of unobjectionable commercial 
drugs and medicines, with the exception of a few whose sale is 
restricted for their poisonous character, by State or local laws, and 
the compounding of physicians' prescriptions, is entirely optional to 
every individual in this land, as well as, more or less so, elsewhere. 
This principle, right or wrong, has lately asserted its validity in regard 
to the practice of medicine, even in Germany,* notwithstanding its 
rigid statutes and thoroughly educated body of physicians it, unfortu- 
nately, leaves a wide and precarious range to license, which, however, 
under the present constitutional privileges of every individual, evidently 
cannot effectually be met otherwise than by the jurisdiction of the penal 
code in the courts, as the ultimate safeguard and recourse in cases of 
injury by malpractice. Beyond this alternative and the fundamental exi- 
gency in this country, to raise and establish by statutes, and subsequently 
to maintain, the standard of education and qualification in the professions, 
no other tribunal can be had for the present, unless that moral one 
which culminates in a proper and sound sense of responsibility, char- 
acter and honor in the individual, and which pharmacists, not less than 
the physicians, individually as well as a class, should possess and deserve 
par excellence. 

Far from sanctioning or countenancing imposition or licence by 
unqualified or unprincipled persons, inside or outside the professions, 
although they, to a very large extent, are admitted by. the laws and 
customs of the land, it may, in regard to pharmacists, be but proper to 
take into consideration, on the other hand, how much good they do, 
in the way of preventing misapplication or omission, and how many a 

* "American Journal of Pharmacy," July, 1874, p. 321. 

16 Pharmacists, Physicians and Nostrums. {^'jSH'HSf^ 

valuable life they may save, by their intelligent and conscientious action, 
and by wise counsel in impressing upon the minds of their customers or 
the afflicted the advantage or necessity of abstaining from experiments, 
at least with domestic remedies, sugar pellets or nostrums, and of resorting 
in time to medical aid. 

The truth is that, in this respect, no complaint on the part of the 
community against the Dharmacists appears to be on record ; and it 
may safely be said that American pharmacy, notwithstanding its many 
wants, especially in regard to the general culture in the individual, 
which it has in common with the other professions, evidently enjoys, 
at present, to a large extent, the public confidence, and meets all rea- 
sonable expectations to general satisfaction. Whenever there has been 
any just demand, the profession has shown the spirit and energy to 
redress and improve any shortcoming, while in its schools it has con- 
tinually been raising the standard of education and qualification, 
although they, perhaps, may have, in time, to face the same danger which 
so deplorably has lowered the status of qualification in so large a por- 
tion of American physicians, arising from the excessive and reckless 
multiplication of rival schools, many of which are said to confer the 
degree of M. D. indiscriminately "on the veriest boor, almost without 
expense, and upon an examination which is little or nothing more than 
a farce," and in this way " annually to let loose upon the community a 
multitude of doctors who are totally unfit for the momentous duties 
with which they, by such a diploma, are legally entrusted."* 

Under such circumstances, where the fundamental requisites for 
confidence and reliance in the physician are so much and so widely 
wanting, in a great number even of regular practitioners throughout the 
land, and where evils are so openly known to exist and call for reform, 
evils which are of no small magnitude to the profession, but of infi- 
nitelv greater consequence to the community, the advancing of impu- 
tations, like the above-mentioned one, on the part of medical journals, 
is at least untimely and impolitic, as it is also uncalled for, and recalls 
forcibly the application of the old adage : " Those who live in glass 
houses should not throw stones." 

3. u We might suggest the propriety of sending our prescriptions to such 
pharmacists as do not vend patent medicines" Although none more than 

*Dr. H. C. Wood, Jr., in " Lippincott's Magazine," December, 1875, pp. 707 

708 and 709. 

Am 'j J an Ur 'i8 P 7 6 arm '} Pharmacists, Physicians and Nostrums. 17 

pharmacists would hail the day when, in consequence of the restored 
universal trust in the physician, doctors* prescriptions and the exclusive 
demand for legitimate medicines would take the place of every sale of 
a nostrum, and the latter pass into oblivion, yet they cannot admit the 
logic as construed and applied in the above assertion, cited from an 
editorial in the New York " Medical Record :"* they share with the 
majority of well-informed and accomplished physicians and the intelli- 
gent part of the community in the opinion that the time has passed by, 
when reliable and competent pharmacists were at a premium, and that 
at present the large body of educated pharmacists to be found through- 
out the country, no matter if they sell nostrums or not, are both 
qualified and trustworthy in their business, however it may be desig- 
nated by some doctors "as a profession or a trade. "f If physicians 
cannot make this discrimination, the public can, and will more and 
more act on their own judgment in the choice of a pharmacist, just as 
in that of a doctor. People of culture cannot but feel it an impropri- 
ety in a physician, unless in exceptional cases, to direct or dictate to a 
patient where to go in order to get his prescription compounded, and 
such insinuation would reveal a want either of tact or of good sense 
in the physician, and would possibly suggest the traditional suspicion of 
a special interest of the latter in the profits which he confers upon a 
pharmacist. % 

In leaving this unpleasant subject, which it is unwarrantable for 
medical writers to advance as a menace, § and in relation to an attempt on 
the part of pharmacists as to the best and most efficient methods in 
dealing with the nostrum traffic, it is proper to state, as expressing the 
sentiment of the pharmaceutical profession and to a large extent that 
of the intelligent public too, that pharmacists are fully justified in 
sharply repelling any such unbecoming insinuation, from whatever side 
it may come, whether by caprice or by want of respect, or under the 
obsolete notion that physicians have the prerogative of exercising a 
tutelage over the practice of pharmacy, a profession which, in the 
United States, too, has reached its majority, and become competent to 
take care of its own affairs and to stand on its own merits. 

When we balance the present status of medicine and pharmacy in 

* October, 1875, P- 7 2 9- 

f New York " Medical Record," October, 1875, P- 682 - 
% "American Journal of Pharmacy," September, 1874, p. 444. 
I New York " Medical Record," October, 1875, P- 7 2 9* 


1 8 Researches upon Buchu. { Am ' jZ'^e! m ' 

our land, the latter need not shrink before a critical but equitable and 
just comparison, both in its accomplishments and its share of applica- 
tion and usefulness in the health service. Both professions present a 
wide and constantly increasing sphere for scientific acquirement and 
practical skill, requiring for adequate qualification, a superior prelimi- 
nary training of the intellect, and a large amount of proficiency and 
knowledge, while both have in common their measure of deficiencies 
and wants, and their drawbacks. When thoughtful and high-minded 
men are conscious of these, and keenly feel shortcomings and abuses, 
and call for improvement and reform, they should, when confronting 
so great evils, bear with real or fancied or overrated minor wants, 
avoid and discountenance unavailing antagonism, and gain and 
cherish strength by advancing friendly and auspicious mutual relations 
between physician and pharmacist. They certainly will meet, in their 
honest and well-directed efforts, with due appreciation, encouragement 
and support. In consideration, however, of the privileges equally 
secured by our national constitution to every individual, and conceding 
a wide scope for licence, all that can be aimed at and realized, in order 
to remedy and counteract the consequences, may be the legislative 
enactment and subsequent maintenance of an adequate standard of 
qualification in every individual inside of the professions. 

Upon the relations between medicine and pharmacy well informed 
men need, on this occasion, no further comment, while the personal 
relations between physician and pharmacist invariably rest on the level 
of education, culture and character in the individual. For short- 
comings in this respect the professions, of course, cannot be held re- 



Buchu from the examinations of previous analysts has been shown 
to contain an ethereal oil in small quantity, and also that this oil con- 
tained a camphor which could be separated from it by exposure to cold. 
No other proximate principle peculiar to the drug has been proven to 
exist in it. 

In handling large quantities of this drug in a manufacturing way, I 
have noticed some facts and peculiarities not mentioned by others, and 
find that the essential oil above mentioned, is not always so simple a 
body as stated. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. \ 
Jan. 1876. j 

Researches upon Buchu. 

l 9 

Some time since, having occasion to distill off the remaining alcohol 
from a partially exhausted lot of buchu, I obtained in the last runnings 
of the still a quantity of oil of buchu, in all, about twelve ounces^ 
and, upon examining it in various ways, I found that upon treatment with 
strong liquor sodae, nearly one-half of the oil dissolved to a clear solu- 
tion ; this solution was separated from the oil unacted upon, and then 
neutralized by hydrochloric acid, which caused the separation of a 
white solid crystalline mass ; this was thrown into a beaker glass and 
washed with water, then dissolved in boiling water, and set aside for 
results. Upon examining the same some time afterwards, I found 
that the whole had assumed a highly crystalline state, was colorless, 
and resembled salicylic acid in form; and upon examining them furthur, 
found that they were in fact that acid, and gave all the reactions for 
that substance, and with ferric chloride gave the beautiful color reaction, 
a deep purplish red. I was very much astonished at the result of my 
examination, and read a paper upon the same at a college meeting some 
six months ago, and should have published the same then, but wished 
to verify the above by further experiments, and since then have made 
several examinations, but not with the same results. 

My next experiment was to distill with water 20 pounds of buchu ; 
(in all these experiments the short variety was used) the oil collected 
and treated with soda as in the former experiment. I found that the 
oil obtained from this lot did not dissolve, or lose the same volume 
that the former did, but that a part formed a clear solution, which, upon 
being separated and neutralized with hydrochloric acid, became milky 
turbid in appearance ; this was set aside over night, and in the morning 
the same was found almost transparent, and filled with a mass of long 
needle-shaped crystals — these were separated by filtration, washed with 
cold water, and suffered to dry on the filter — they were tested in solu- 
tion in water, with negative results, except with nit. silver and ferric 
chloride ; that of the ferric chloride was very marked and decided; upon 
addition of this reagent to the colorless solution it caused an intense 
blueish black color even in very dilute solutions, as decided as that of 
salicylic acid with this reagent, but of a different color. 

Failing in this experiment to obtain the same results as in the former, 
and thinking over the matter, thought that probably the alcohol might 
have caused some change in the former ; a quantity of fluid extract of 
buchu, about six pints, was distilled with the addition of water. I 
obtained only a small quantity of oil, which, in every respect, gave the 


Researches upon Buchu. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 

same reactions as with that obtained by distilling the buchu with water. 
With this experiment the investigation was left at rest, until this 
Fall, when it was again taken taken up, and whilst engaged in it, Mr, 
Wm. M. Thompson, of W. H. Merrell & Co., brought me as curios- 
ity a few crystals of a substance that he said was obtained in attempting 
to distill off the alcohol from a lot of buchu magma. I immediately 
recognized them as being the same substance I found in the two last 
experiments ; and learning from him that the whole was just about the 
same as the mass that I had originally distilled, and found salicylic acid 
in the oil, I made a request of Messrs. W. H. Merrell & Co., through 
him, that the same be placed at my disposal, to which they kindly con- 
sented. I received a barrel about three-fourths full of the magma, and 
distilled it with water. I obtained from it a portion or all of the alco- 
hol, and by continuing the distillation and cohobating the watery distillate 
obtained six gallons of a milky distillate, but only slight traces of oil 
floating upon it. This distillate was set aside over night, and upon 
examining the same in the morning, found there had formed nearly two 
inches deep upon the bottom of the vessel holding the liquid, a mass 
of long needle-shaped crystals, some an inch and a half long ; the 
supernatant liquid was syphoned off, and the crystals then collected on 
a filter. These were tested as the former, and with ferric chloride gave 
the same dark bluish-black color. The water syphoned off also gave 
the same, and the alcohol distilled from the magma gave the same 
result. I obtained no oil to test for salicylic acid, and could not detect 
it in any of the distillates. From this lot of buchu I have obtained 
nearly three ounces of this crystalline body, in long needle-shaped 
colorless crystals, having an odor indicative of their origin, yet different 
What it is, I am not yet able to say, but shall examine it more fully 
and report at some future time. 

Buchu, from what has been shown, evidently contains some sub- 
stance, that by its chemical change, will yield salicylic acid, and proba- 
bly it is the crystalline body I have found in the three last experiments. 
This is sparingly soluble in water at ordinary temperatures, freely at 
the boiling-point ; which solution upon cooling, becomes turbid from 
separation of oil drops, which afterwards turn to crystals soluble in 
alcohol and ether ; and the aqueous solution with ferric chloride forms 
an intense, I may say, inky blue color, so intense as to render the 
solution opapue even in a test tube half an inch in diameter. 

Nitrate of silver also occasions a precipitate of a purplish color, 
deeper than that of chloride silver, exposed to the action of light. 
Cincinnati, Dec, 1875. 


Arn, j J a n r x8 P 7 6 arm *} Molybdic in Sulphuric Acid as a test. 2 1 



Dr. Regnald Southey, Physician to St. Bartholomew's Hospital, 
London, in his report for 1874, (vol. x, p. 303), announces, as a new 
test for opium, a solution of molybdic acid in sulphuric acid. The 
following is an abstract of his statement : " A new test for opium ; a 
color test, at once so characteristic and intense, of such easy applica- 
bility and such extreme delicacy, that it needs only to be more 
generally known in order to be often employed ; molybdic acid 
dissolved in pure sulphuric acid is the testfluid ; a saturated, or, at all 
events, a strong solution should be made. Th,e reaction is produced 
by mDrphia in opium, not by the meconic acid ; the latter undergoes 
no change with the reagent ; the former, in minutest quantities, at once 
furnishes characteristic reaction. The best mode of proceeding is to 
place a drop of the suspected fluid side by side with a drop of the 
test fluid, by means of a glass rod; at once, if morphia, or any of its 
salts, be present, a beautiful deep maroon color will be presented, when 
the fluids are brought in contact ; the color changes after a while, 
becoming, first deep purple, and then gradually losing its red element, 
and becoming dark, and later, a brighter blue. In evidence of the 
minuteness of this test I may adduce the following facts : The re- 
action is distinctly obtained with a single drop of pharmacopoeial tinct. 
opii, as also with the compound tincture of camphor. 

" The presence of a good deal of impurity, and of alien organic matter, 
does not interfere much with it. Of this I feel confident, that the busy 
practitioner will hail this new discovery, which enables him to detect lauda- 
num or morphia in the dregs of bottles, brought to him to test, and in 
fluids vomited, and to swear to its presence with positive security. I was 
enabled to detect the grain of morphia, as presented in the 
morphia lozenge of our pharmacopoeia." 

It is an error that such tests are published, especially for determining 
the presence of so important a principle and so common a poison as 
morphia, and with the commendation of one whose position should 
warrant authority and reliability. We should be sorry to learn of Dr. 
Southey's swearing to the presence of opium or morphia, his findings 
based upon this test alone, in a chemico-legal poison case, where a 

* Read, December 7th, before the Monthly Meeting of the New York Alumni 
Association of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. 

22 Molybdic in Sulphuric Acid as a test. { Am jI™s*l A ™' 

person's life or liberty was depending upon his testimony. The test is 
not characteristic ; there are many other organic bodies which yield the 
same color with the reagent, and the presence of other organic matter 
does materially interfere with the reaction, varying according to its 
character. He states that he was able to produce the reaction with a 
single drop of tinct. opii or tinct. opii camph., he could as well pro- 
duce the same reaction with any other tincture, and even with pure 
alcohol ; but they give a bright purple color, changing to blue, and not 
the maroon, which is produced by pure morphia, and similar bodies. 

Mr. Buckingham, in " American Journal of Pharmacy," 1873, P- 
150, proposed a solution of molybdate of ammonium, eight grains, in 
sulphuric acid, two drachms, as a test for some organic bodies, giving 
a table, showing the changes of color produced by the most important 
alkaloids, and, while his results show that his experiments were con- 
ducted with care, yet he overlooked the fact that those colors vary 
according to the condition under which the test is applied. Prescott, 
in his new and valuable little work on proximate organic analysis, p. 
144, devotes much space to Frcehde's reagent, which is a solution of 
molybdate of sodium, O'Oi grain, in concentrated sulphuric acid, 10 cc, 
and gives a table showing the reaction with the reagent, and with pure 
sulphuric acid. I do not think that the indications wnich he presents 
there were proven with proper care ; he states that morphia is colorless 
with concent, sulphuric acid — it gives a wine-red color. These test 
solutions of molybdic acid, or molybdates in sulphuric acid, all give 
like reactions, (varying slightly in intensity of color). My experiments 
prove them to be unreliable, and therefore worthless, for determining 
the presence of the alkaloids ; for instance, pure quinia gives little or 
no color, but some of its salts at once yield a reaction ; bromide and 
iodide, deep blue ; ferrocyanide, red ; tannate, red-brown. 

The maroon color which Dr. Southey produced with morphia, and 
is produceable with other bodies, is caused by the red color, given with 
the sulphuric acid, blending with the blue hydrate of molybdenum, 
which is formed by the reduction of molybdic acid and the molybdates, 
when brought in contact with certain organic matters ; the variable 
green color is produced by blending with the yellow color given to 
many organic bodies by the action of sulphuric acid, and when these 
solutions produce a red, yellow or brown coloration, with an organic 
principle, the reaction is simply with the sulphuric acid, the molybdates 
taking no part in it. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 

Laboratory Notes. 

Solution of the proto-salts of tin, zinc or copper, yield a deep blue 
color with the molybdates. 

There is no more need of molybdic acid, or molybdates, in these 
test solutions than for the presence of any other blue coloring matter, 
which will blend with the color produced by sulphuric acid, and 
produce tints which, while pleasing to the eye, confuse the analyst. 



Damiana. — A quantity of this new remedy, purchased in New York, 
and similar to that figured as No. 3 in the November (1875) ''Journal 
of Pharmacy" (page 578), was made into fluid extract. The drug 
was exhausted with 76 per cent, alcohol. The filtered extract, upon 
standing for several days in a glass vessel, deposited all over that part 
of the vessel filled with it, a crystalline crust. The extract was poured 
from the bottle and crystals removed, which upon examination were 
found to be, not a proximate principle, as I expected, but chloride of 

Eucalyptus globulus. — In the preparation of the fluid extract of this 
substance, I have not been able to obtain a preparation that would not 
in a short time form a copious precipitate, supposed to be chlorophyll. 
The green appearance of it warranted that opinion, but when separat- 
ing it from the extract, and examining it, I found that chlorophyll 
formed only a small part of the mass. I dissolved the precipitate in 
alcohol, filtered it through bone black, and obtained a light-colored 
solution, free from the green chlorophyll. This was then treated with 
an alcoholic solution of plumbic acetate, which was added as long as it 
gave a precipitate ; this was filtered, and sulphydric acid passed into 
the nitrate, to remove excess of lead. After removing the sulphide of 
lead, the filtrate was placed in a loosely covered vessel, to evaporate 
spontaneously. As the alcohol evaporated, crystals began to form on 
the sides of the bottle, and by slow evaporation a confused crystalline 
mass was obtained, retaining the peculiar odor of the substance. I 
could not make out the crystalline form, but removed the crystals and 
reduced them to a powder, the color a pale ochre tint. The substance 
is soluble in ether and chloroform ; its alcoholic solution gives, with 
ferric chloride, a dark brownish-red color. The precipitate conse- 
quently contains, besides chlorophyll and tannic acid, a peculiar crys- 
tallizable acid resin, which gives a brown-red reaction with ferric 


A loin. 

Am. Jour Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 



[Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, Dec- i\st, 1875.) 

The subject of aloin having lately been again brought to the notice 
of the pharmaceutical world by the experiments of Mr. Tilden, it 
occured to the writer to undertake some experiments on aloin, in order 
to ascertain if a good article could not be prepared by some reliable pro- 
cess, not too difficult for general adoption. 

The grades of aloin, as found in the market, have occasioned much 
distrust of its value as a medicine, on account of the unreliability and 
uncertainty attending their use, very often being almost inert. Aloin, 
when of a good character, is a very safe and efficient cathartic and 
purgative, acting freely in doses of from 1 to 3 grs. It affords a conve- 
nient and efficacious method of obtaining the remedial effects of aloes 
in a concentrated form. 

In making these experiments the process of Mr. Tilden (Am. "Jour. 
Pharm. 187 1.) was followed. " One pound of good Barbadoes aloes 
was broken up and dissolved with heat in 1 gal. water, acidulated with 
f^ss sulphuric acid, and after perfect solution, was set aside for twenty- 
tour hours to cool. The supernatant, clear liquid was poured ofF from 
the resin (which is comparatively inert), and evaporated by a gentle heat 
to about 2 pints, and then set aside for several days. On examining 
the liquid at the expiration of that time, a heavy crystalline deposit of 
a yellow color was found on the bottom and sides of the vessel. This 
was collected on a filter, washed with a little ice-cold water to remove 
coloring matter, well drained and dried. This aloin is rather impure. 
It can be rendered quite pure by dissolving it in warm water, decolor- 
ing with animal charcoal, and again evaporating and crystallizing. 

Aloin, thus obtained, is of a yellow color, crystalline, and of an 
extremely bitter, aloetic taste. It is slightly soluble in cold water, very 
soluble in hot water, and soluble in alcohol. The yield was about 600 

Some of this aloin was made up into pills, and it purged actively in 
doses of 2 grs. 

The liquid from which the crystalline deposit had been separated 
was evaporated to extract consistence, yielding about 10 ounces of a 
very good article of extractum aloes. 

The main point to be considered in the preparation of a reliable 
article of aloin, is the selection of a good grade of aloes. Barbadoes 

Am. Tour. Pharm. ) 
Jan. 1876. J 

Wafer Capsules. 

aloes is generally the best, on account of the aloin obtained from it, 
being much more easily separated and more active, than that obtained 
from the other varieties of aloes. Natal aloes, lately quite prevalent 
in the market, also affords an extremely handsome " looking " article 
of aloin, but unfortunately it, as well as the aloes itself, is very weak 
in its action ; 15 and 20 grs. of the aloin having been taken with the 
result of only a slight purgative action. 

The writer also examined an article of aloin prepared from a grade 
of aloes, called Curagoa ; but this was also quite weak in its action. 

The best means of detecting the nataloin is by its reaction with 
strong sulphuric acid, and the vapor of nitric acid, as proposed by 
Histed. Add a few grains of the suspected aloin to several drops of 
strong sulphuric acid, and then pass a glass rod, moistened with strong 
nitric acid, gently just over its surface. The presence of nataloin 
will be indicated by the blue color which immediately results. Barb- 
aloin can be detected by its reaction with strong nitric acid, giving a red 




[Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, December zist.) 

In the "American Journal of Pharmacy," 1873, P a & e I 9°-> an ^ 1875, 
page 213, notices have appeared describing such wafer envelopes or 

Recently attention has been specially directed to the advantages of 
this method, and there have appeared in the market wafer discs and 
presses to enable the druggist to dispense them. The want of infor- 
mation as to their production and the expense attending upon the press 
has proven a barrier to their general introduction. 

The plan consists in having two small concave wafer discs to fit 
each other in such manner that when joined a perfectly sealed envelope 
or capsule is formed, thus rendering feasible the administration of such 
medicines as are free from moisture, in a tasteless and odorless manner, 
also allowing the presentation in one envelope of two substances, sep- 
arated by a middle leaf of wafer paper, with the intention that they 
unite in the stomach, and form a salt in the nascent state. 

It is possible to secure all these advantages bv means of apparatus 


Wafer Capsules. 

/Am. Jour. Pharm. 
1 Jan. 1876. 

and wafer discs that can be prepared by any one at a very trifling out- 

To prepare the capsules, the mode of proceeding is as follows : 
Procure wafers in sheets such as are used by fancy-cakes-bakers. Cut 
them into circular pieces by means of a hollow punch. One of these 
is slightly dampened by placing it between wet muslin cloths, removed 
and inserted between two tin plates which have been prepared of the 
desired shape of the finished disc ; after pressing together the plates, 
the wafer will have received the desired impression and is ready to 
receive whatever suitable combination the physician may desire to pre- 

I have, however, found wafer sheets which could not be moistened 
and worked to advantage in this way ; but these can be managed with- 
out this treatment, if the tin plates are heated, the flat wafer inserted, 
and pressure applied as before. 

These latter have a highly polished surface, and can be manufactured 
with greater rapidity than the former. 

The use of the press is to seal the wafers. This is accomplished 
by properly moistening the internal surface of the rim of one wafer, 
upon which has previously been placed the medicine, and covering this 
with another, and submitting to pressure. This moistening is done by 
an apparatus formed by taking two hollow metallic cylinders, differing 
in diameter, enclosing one within the other and filling the intervening 
space with round lampwick or flannel cloth, which is allowed to slightly 
project. This is moistened by applying it to a piece of flannel which 
has been previously wetted ; or one of the discs may be pressed upon 
a moistened cloth until the rim is in such condition that when applied 
to the filled disc it will adhere. 

Our fellow-member, E. M. Boring, has devised a press which 

answers all requirements, and is yet so simple in its construction that 
any one can, in a short time, with comparatively no expense, make one. 
It consists of two pieces of one-and-a-half-inch hardwood board, 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 

Vinegar Bitters. 


two inches wide and nine inches long, joined together at one end with 
a good hinge. The pressing surfaces consist of concave pieces of 
brass or metal, having a rim corresponding to the various sizes of wafer 
discs sunk to a proper level and fastened into the body of the press. 
For these, buttons for stair-rods answer every purpose. 

The medicated capsule is now ready for the patient, who will be thus 
enabled to take such bitter substances as quinia, aloes, &c, without 
perceiving the least taste whatever, and requiring very little effort to 
swallow, all that is requisite being to dip the wafer for a moment in 
cold water, place it upon the tongue, and swallow with a very small 
drink of water. 



{Abstract of a paper presented to and published by request of the American Pharma- 
ceutical Association, Sept. 1875.) 

The appearance of this compound reminds one very forcibly of a 
mud-hole in clayey soil, for it looks as if it was taken from such a 
depository and bottled ; this,' probably, explains why the proprietors 
have their wrappers so firmly fixed over their unsightly mixture. On 
opening the boctle it gives a slight report, indicating the presence of 
some gas ; its odor is that of a mixture of oil of anise and aloes., its 
taste sour, very bitter, with an anise flavor. 

To determine the composition of this nostrum, the author subjected 
the contents of a bottle to distillation, passing the gas through an am- 
moniacal solution of barium chloride, in which a white precipitate was 
produced (carbonic acid). The distilled liquid was found to contain 
oil of anise, acetic acid and alcohol, the presence of the latter being 
proven by the acetic ether and iodoform tests. 

The balance of the contents of the bottle was neutralized with am- 
monia, evaporated to dryness, and the residue exhausted with absolute 
alcohol ; insoluble portion marked A, soluble portion, B. The latter 
was exhausted with cold water ; the solution, after long-continued boil- 
ing with dilute sulphuric acid, yielded to ether paracumaric acid, recog- 
nized by its solubility and the golden yellow color produced with ferric 
chloride ; the presence of aloes was thus proven. 

The portion of B, which was insoluble in cold water, was partly sol- 
uble in chloroform ; the remainder, dissolving in solution of carbonate 
of sodium, was free from the resins of colocynth and jalap, and con. 

28 Gleanings from Foreign Journals, { Am -&876. rm ' 

sisted of resin of aloes. The chloroformic solution left, on evapora- 
tion, a residue which was soluble in boiling solution of sodium carbon- 
ate, and reprecipitated by sulphuric acid as dirty yellowish flakes, which 
were indifferent to carbon bisulphide (absence of gamboge), but dis- 
solved in alcohol, and then yielded with ferric chloride, chlorine water 
and bichromate of potassium the characteristic green coloration of 

In the residue A, the presence of sulphuric acid and soda was easily 
proven. A portion of it was dissolved in water and precipitated by 
strong alcohol. In a portion of this the presence of sugar was indi- 
cated by Trommer's test ; another portion of the watery solution was 
turned milky bv oxalic acid and gelatinized by concentrated solution of 
ferric chloride ; presence of gum arabic. 

Summing up the results, we find that this humbug is composed of 
the following rare native herbs of the West, as collected by such 
Indians and associates as Dr. J. Walker, viz., Cape aloes, Glauber's 
salt, gum arabic, gum guaiac, acetic acid, carbonic acid, alcohol and oil 
of anise. 



Citrate of Lithium^ prepared in accordance with the British Pharma- 
copoeia (ioo parts of carbonate of lithium and 180 parts of citric acid), 
has, according to C. Umney, a distinct alkaline reaction, while that 
made by the United States formula ( I oo carbonate of lithium to 200 citric 
acid) is strongly acid, ioo parts of pure carbonate of lithium will be 
required to neutralize 189*2 parts of citric acid, the product of anhy- 
drous lithium citrate being identical with the amount of citric acid 
employed. If commercial carbonate of lithium of fine quality contain 
98 5 per cent, of real carbonate, then the proportions would be 100 parts 
of carbonate and 186*5 parts of citric acid. Lithium citrate, prepared 
from these proportions and rendered anhydrous, was neutral to test- 
paper. A solution of specific gravity 1*230 when set aside produced 
crystalline citrate of lithium, which appears to have the formula Li 3 C 6 
H f) 7 +4H 2 at 100 C. (21 2° F.) ; this salt loses three molecules of 
water, the fourth being given off at 115 (239 F.), leaving about 73 
per cent, of anhydrous citrate. Ten commercial samples were exa- 
mined ; they left, when dried at ioo° C, residues varying in weight 
between 76*5 and 85*2 per cent., and at 115 C. from 72*9 to 83*8 

Am >n ur i8^6. arm ' } Gleanings from Foreign Journals. 29 

per cent, of anhydrous citrate. Mr. Umney advocates the adoption of 
the crystallized salt, which is thoroughly definite and reliable and whose 
appearance would guarantee its uniformity. The definition of "delin- 
quescent," applied by the two pharmacopoeias, is inaccurate. — Pharm, 
Jour, and Trans., 1875, Sept. 11. 

Bromide of Lithium is prepared by Yvon by mixing 37 grams of car- 
bonate of lithium, 200 grams of distilled water and 80 grams of bro- 
mine, and passing a current of sulphuretted hydrogen through the 
mixture until the color of bromine has disappeared. A slight heat is 
then applied to drive off excess of sulphuretted hydrogen and to agglu- 
tinate the sulphur. After filtration, the liquor is concentrated and 
finally crystallized by desiccating it under a glass over sulphuric acid. 

It may also be obtained by double decomposition. Sulphate of lithium 
is first formed by treating 37 grams of carbonate of lithium with 49 
grams of monohydrated sulphuric acid, diluted with its own volume of 
water. On the other hand, 119 grams of potassium bromide are dis- 
solved in the smallest possible quantity of water. When the two 
solutions are mixed, an abundant precipitate of potassium sulphate is 
produced and increased by the addition of a little alcohol. The whole 
is evaporated to dryness, finishing the operation on a water-bath, and 
the residue is treated with alcohol which removes only bromide of 
lithium and deposits it again on evaporation. The bromide may then 
be crystallized from water or kept in solution of known strength. — 
Ibid., Sept. 18. 

Combinations of glacial acetic acid with oils. — As a continuation of his 
paper on the solubility of alkaloids in oil ("Am. Jour. Pharm.," 1875, 
p. 540), Mr. J. B. Barnes communicates the following results of his 

The minimum combining proportions of the following five commer- 
cial samples of oil are, for one volume of glacial acetic acid, almond 
oil 7 vol., olive oil, 8 vol., codliver oil, 7 vol., linseed oil 7 vol., and 
oil of rhodium 4 vol. 

The maximum combining proportions of the next five are, for one 
volume of the acid, oil of turpentine, \ vol., oil of lemon, 2 vol., oil 
lemon grass, 2 vol., oil of lemon grass, 2 vol., oil of copaiba, ^ vol., 
oil of juniper, 1 vol. 

The following 41 oils will mix with glacial acetic acid in all propor- 
tions : castor, cloves, croton, caraway, rosemary, sandal, cajeput, 

30 Gleanings from Foreign Journals. { Am, jan. r i8 > 7 6 arm ' 

orange, bergamot, anise, almonds (bitter), origanum, chamomile, euca- 
lyptus, sage, cinnamon, cassia, lavender, myrtle, marjoram, pennyroyal, 
citronella, pimento, sassafras, calamus, spearmint, wormwood, neroli 
cubebs, coriander, cumin, peppermint, geranium, male fern, citron, 
fennel, rue, savin, amber, nutmeg and essential oil of mustard. — Ibid. 

Preservation of Hydrocyanic Acid. — Mr. John Williams has continued 
his experiments on the preservative influence of glycerin upon hydro- 
cyanic acid (see "Am. Jour. Phar.," 1874, p. 487). Two samples, of 
ten fluidounces each, and containing respectively 4*5 and 2 per cent, 
of acid, were put in pint bottles, glass stoppered, but not tied over or 
inverted ; each contained 20 per cent, of Price's pure glycerin. The 
bottles were opened after six and twelve months, and the acids were 
found not to have diminished in strength or altered in appearance. 
German glycerin was found to assume a yellow color with hydrocyanic 
acid. — Ihid., Sept. 25. 

Syrup of Tolu. — Regarding the resin of tolu as the main or sole act- 
ive principle, Henrotte is in favor of retaining it in the syrup, and 
effects its permanent emulsion in the following manner: 10 grams of 
finely-powdered tragacanth are triturated with sufficient simple syrup 
to form a mucilage ; 40 grams of tincture of tolu are added and an 
emulsion made, to which enough simple syrup is added to make the 
whole weight 1,000 grams. — four, de Phar. d'Anvers, 1875, p. 337— 


Administration af Raw Meat. — Dr. Lailler proposes to mix 100 grs. 
of grated raw meat with 40 grs. of powdered sugar, adding afterwards 
20 grs. of Bagnols wine (sparkling ?) and 3 grams of tincture of cin- 
namon. This mixture has an agreeable taste and is easily digested. — 
four, de Phar. et de Chim., 1 875, Nov., p. 367. 

Solubility of Borax in Glycerin — According to Gandolphe, glycerin 
dissolves, at the ordinary temperature, its own weight of borax by tri- 
turating them in a mortar, or more rapidly by applying the heat of a 
water-bath. This solution which keeps unaltered is well adapted for 
mouth washes after the addition of some clarified honey or honey of 
roses. 100 parts of water dissolve only 8*33 parts of borax. Boracic 
acid is likewise more soluble in glycerin than in water, but not to the 
same degree as borax. — Ibid., from Union Phar. 

Test for Sulphocarbonates. — A. Mermet proposes for this purpose an 

Am j J a n Ur i876 harm '} Development of the Chemical Arts. 31 

ammoniacal solution of sulphate or chloride of nickel, diluted with 
water until it appears colorless. A few drops of a solution of sulpho- 
carbonate will produce with the reagent a very characteristic currant 
color ; while liver of sulphur, which is occasionally sold as sulphocar- 
bonate, produces a yellow, and the alkaline monosulphides a brown or 
black color. — Ibid,, p. 352. 

Devorative Capsules. — Under this name, the chemical factory of Hel- 
fenberg, near Dresden, has introduced capsules which are made of a 
material similar to sheet wafers, but rolled out very thin like vellum 
paper. It is -used like ordinary powder paper, except that after the 
powder has been put upon it the length margin is moistened with water 
by means of a hair pencil ; it is then folded in the usual way, the ends 
being likewise fastened by the aid of moisture. The entire capsule 
with contents is swallowed after having been dipped in water and, if 
necessary, rolled up. — Phar. Centr. Halle, 1875, No. 42. 



(Continued from page 559 of last volume.) 


Of the three properties to which the industrial applications of hydrogen are appli- 
cable two are of so striking a nature that they cannot have escaped the earliest 
observers. To them it appeared as the combustible principle, the "volatile sul- 
phur ^'f subsequently, it was regarded as the long-sought-for phlogiston, % or as the 
" inflammable air," of which all combustible gases were mere varieties. In modern 
times, this previously vague knowledge has been rendered definite, recognizing in 
hydrogen the greatest heat of combustion, and consequently the property of produc- 
ing the highest degrees of heat and light, properties which met with a practical 
application at an early date. 

The low specific gravity of hydrogen did not escape the earliest observers. Being 
scarcely ponderable, it excited the idea of imponderable bodies, and its specific light- 
ness, as well as its great heat of combustion, soon met with a striking application. 

A third attribute is of a less manifest nature. Occasionally destroying colors, 

but often obtained without any brilliant and striking phenomena, hydrogen in its 

nascent state is capable of entering into many combinations, of which it is incapable 

when pre-existing in a free state. It liberates chlorine, oxygen, and other elements 

from their compounds, and takes their place j or it is deposited in compounds not 

fully saturated, and fills up the vacancies. This attribute is most weighty for the 

* " Berichte fiber die Entwickelung der Chemischen Industrie Wahrend des Letzten J ahrzeheEds." 
f Lemery, " Memoires de l'Academie," 1700. 
J Cavendish, 1766. 

3 2 Development of the Chemical Arts. { j4m j J a ° n ur ; 8 £ 6 harm 

most recent developement of chemistry, as well as of great technological importance. 
Unawares, this property has been made use of for ages. Upon it depends the trans- 
mutation of indigo-blue in the vat into indigo-white, and, consequently, one of the 
oldest and most important branches of the art of dyeing. 

In 1842, Zinin succeeded in converting nitrobenzol into anilin by the action of 
nascent hydrogen, and thus opened out an industrial region of unimagined extent. 
The era of the artificial dyes followed. It was soon perceived that many of these 
substances shared with indigotin the property of being decolorised by hydrogen, and 
thus zinc-powder was introduced into calico-printing as a discharging agent, which, 
developing hydrogen in patterns where it is printed on, remove artificial coloring 
matters, e.g., magenta.* 

A series of interesting observations showed, however, that the manner in which 
hydrogen is evolved is not without influence on hydrogenisation. Whilst ammonium 
sulphide, and whilst acids under the influence of metals give up so much hydrogen 
to nitrobenzol as to form anilin ; if other sources of hydrogen are employed the 
reaction is arrested half-way, and intermediate products are generated. Herewith, 
therefore, nascent hydrogen escapes from our general consideration, and its technical 
application will be described in future parts of this report. 

We return, therefore, to its applications as a source of heat and light. It has been 
briefly described in the section on oxygen how the oxyhydrogen blast was evolved 
from the experiments of Saron between 1780 and 1790, and how it was introduced 
in the manufacture of platinum in the middle of the present century by Deville and 
Debray. Since 1838! Desbassains de Richemont found in hydrogen mixed with air 
the means for the autogenous soldering of sheets of lead, and thus supplied the sul- 
phuric acid manufacture with the fundamental condition of its growth, i.e., perma- 
nent lead chambers of any desired magnitude. If, in places where coal-gas is readily 
procurable, this combustible is substituted for hydrogen in soldering lead, many 
sulphuric acid chambers are not near gas-works, and in them hydrogen is still 
necessary for soldering. The same must be said on the application of hydrogen for 
the autogenous soldering of other metals and alloys, a process for which Winckler, 
in his convincing essay already quoted, predicts a great future. More recently, lead 
pans soldered in this manner have been introduced in the manufacture of boracic 
acid in Italy. Numerous conflagrations, especially that of Canterbury Cathedral in 
1 871, and that of the Alexandra Palace on Muswell Hill in 1873, demonstrably due 
to the braziers full of fire used in soldering the leaden spouts, have led, in England, 
to the proposal to solder leaden roofing and spouting with hydrogen. 

How far hydrogen is superior to other kinds of fuel appears from the following 
table. According to the experiments of Favre and Silbermann, 1 grm. of the follow- 
ing bodies, when burnt in water, gave the appended number of calorics, f. <?., it 
raised, by i°, the temperature of the given number of centigrams of water.J 

* The transformation of the colored salts of rosanilin into the colorless salts of leucanilin by means of 
zinc and hydrochloric acid, was discovered by A. W. Hofmann, in i860, — Proc. Roy. See, vol. xii., p. 2. 
The above application is due to Durand. See Schutzenberger, " Traite des Matieres Colorantes," vol. 
i, p. 491. 

I Karmarsch, " Geschichte der Technologie," 380. 

J A. Witrtz, " Dictionnaire de Chimie," vol. i, pp. 825, 826. 

*j5K8$" m '} Development of the Chemical Arts. 

Hydrogen, . . . . . . 34*462 

Carbonic oxide, . . , . . 2-403 

Oil of turpentine, ..... 10*852 

Stearic acid, . . . . . 9*7 1 6 

Alcohol, ...... 7*814 

Marsh-gas, ..... 13*063 

Wood charcoal (burnt to carbonic acid), . . . 8*080 

Ethylen, . . . . . . 11-858 

Ether, . . . . . . 9*028 

The temperature of the flame does not, however, depend exclusively on the heat 
of combustion. The density of the burning body and the specific heat of the prod- 
ucts of combustion must also be taken into account. Hence it comes that the tem- 
perature of the hydrogen flame in pure oxygen is about 6800 , in air about 2600 ; 
the temperature of the flame of carbonic oxide in oxygen amounts to 7000 , in air 
about 3000 ;* further according to calculation 1 vol. of hydrogen = 1 grin, is 
capable of fusing 205 grms. of platinum, whilst the same volume of carbonic oxide 
can fuse 238 grms, of platinum (melting-point, 2000 ). In practice, however, even 
under the most favorable conditions, as Deville and Debray determined in their 
researches on platinum, about half the heat is lost by conduction to the furnace and 
other surrounding matter, and the above authorities with 120 litres of hydrogen and 
60 of oxygen succeeded in fusing only 1 kilo, of platinum instead of double the 
amount as calculated. Platinum can also be smelted and refined under similar cir- 
cumstances with coal-gas. But for the more infusible metals of the platinum group, 
iridium, ruthenium, and their alloys, the hydrogen flame must be retained, which, if 
costlier than coal-gas, is cheaper than carbonic oxide. 

In the use of gases as fuel, the metal itself can be brought in contact with the 
flame, which is impracticable in case of carbon, and thus the great loss of heat is 
avoided which ensues when the crucible is heated from without. Their application 
renders it also possible to inspect the condition of the metal at any moment. In the 
metallurgy of the common metals these two advantages do not come into consider- 
ation. Carbon, moreover, is not only the cheapest but the most productive fuel,f 
and the application of hydrogen as a source of heat seems therefore limited to auto- 
genous soldering and to the fusion of the most refractory platinum metals. 

The property of platinum-black to ignite hydrogen, of which Dobereiner made 
a well-known and widely utilized application in his hydrogen lamp in 1823, has lost 
its practical importance owing to the discovery of friction matches. 

The more intense and permanent was the interest which hydrogen created as a 
source of light. 

As the luminous power depends on the temperature at which a solid ignited body 
is maintained, the suggestion was near at hand to produce an intense light by means 
of this gas, in which an incombustible body was heated to whiteness. To this end 
the Scotch military engineer Drummond used in 1826 cylinders of caustic lime 
heated in the oxyhydrogen flame. The Drummond light has been widely employed, 

* Debray " Sur la Production des Temperatures Elevees et sur la Fusion de la Platine." Lecons de 
Chimie en 1861, 65 ; Paris, 1861. 

f The calculated temperature of the flame of carbon in oxygen is io,ooo°, from which has to be deducted 
the unknown amount of heat which at this temperature is lost by dissociation. See Debray, opus citat, 


34 Development of the Chemical Arts. { Am ' j^^ m ' 

not merely in geodetic measurements and in lighthouses, which the inventor had 
principally in view, but also for projections of microscopic objects and photographic 
images on glass, or drawings upon gelatin for demonstration in lecture-halls,* for 
dissolving views, and chromatropes. In the American civil war it was used in sieges 
to light up forts. f The English war department has tried it in barracks, in large 
halls and courts, in whichj it is said to have proved cheaper than coal-gas, whilst the 
smallest characters could be read at a distance of 90 metres from the source of 

Since lime partially loses its luminous power by continued use, platinum-wire, 
magnesia, and latterly zirconia, have been employed in its stead. g 

The above-mentioned application of the hydrogen lamps are, however, of a very 
limited nature. To utilize it on the large scale for street lighting, the simultaneous 
use of oxygen has been laid aside, and cheaper methods of preparation have been 
sought for. For this purpose advantage was taken of Felice Fontana's method of 
decomposing water by means of ignited iron and ignited carbon, as proposed in 
1780.ll On the latter scheme Donovan founded his industrial preparation of 
hydrogen gas in Dublin, in 1830. His process has been repeatedly described with 
modifications, referring in part to the needful apparatus, and in part to the 
diminution of the proportion of carbonic oxide. The presence of this poisonous 
gas was at first justly urged as an argument against the use of the " water gas." 
Langlois found that the mixture obtained — on allowing steam to pass over iron 
retorts filled with red hot coke in Kirkham's apparatus — had the tolerably constant 
composition of 58 to 60 per cent, of hydrogen, 19 to 26 carbonic oxide, and 15 to 20 
carbonic acid. 

It was subsequently, however, discovered^ that at higher temperatures carbonic 
oxide is oxidized by watery vapor to carbonic acid, so that if the steam is in excess 
a gas may be obtained relatively free from carbonic oxide, as shown in the reaction 
— C-j-2H 2 0=4.H-|-C0 2 . In the water-gas prepared at Narbonne, where the gas on 
issuing from the retorts is conducted through ignited tubes along with fresh 
quantities of superheated steam, Verver** found in 1858, 3*54 per cent, of carbonic 
oxide. According to other, observers the amount ranged from 2*5 to 5 per cent. 
In the water-gas at Passy, Payen found 6 per cent, of carbonic oxide, whilst in 
ordinary coal-gas he found an average of no less than 14 per cent. The above- 
mentioned objection, therefore, no longer holds good. 

The carbonic acid is removed by milk of lime, or, perhaps, more economically, 
according to the suggestion of Heurtebiseff by soda, which is thereby converted 
into bicarbonate, a readily saleable substance. 

FayesJ| constructed for lighting the town of Narbonne an apparatus which he 

:i; This Report, Nov., 1875, p. 509 ; also H. Vogel, " Ber. d. Chem. Gesell.," iii, 901. 

f Wagner, " Lehrbuch der Technologic" 9th edit , ii, p. 377. 

j" Journal of Gas-lighting," 1869. 

§ See the work of Phillips, quoted above. 

j| Mem. Soc. Hal., xv. 

«j[Bromeis, Zeitsch. d. Ver. deutsch. Ing., iii. 82, and Dingier Polyt. J., clxiv. 33, 1859. 
** B. Verver. " L'eclairage au gaz a" l'eau a Narbonne et l'eclairage au gaz Leprince." Leiden 1858. 
See Bromeis, opus citat. 

ft Heurtebise, Dingl. Pol. J , cxxcvi. (?), 393, 1867. 

tX Fayes, Genie industries 1868, 329. Dingl. Pol. J,, clix. 47. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 



named gasogen, which furnished in twenty-four hours 1,000 to 1,200 cubic metres 
of purified gas, the cost of which, independent of labor, and of the cost and 
depreciation of plant, he calculates as follows : — 

For 100 Cubic Metres of Gas. 

f. c. 

75 kilos of coke at 0*03 franc . . . . 2 25 

55 " coal at 0*025 " . . .137 

82 " lime . . . . .82 

4 44 

The material costs, therefore, 4J centimes per cubic metre. 

Instead of decomposing water by carbon, certain other processes have recently 
come into use, and require notice. 

Lenoir's process,* suggested in 1867, is of very limited applicability. He 
decomposed barium sulphide with water, obtaining sulphate of baryta and 
hydrogen — BaS-f-4H 2 0=BaS0 4 -f-4H 2 . This process is only practicable where the 
manufacture of barium sulphate (permanent white) is the main object, and the 
hydrogen a by-product, as was the case with Lenoir. — Chem. Nevus, Sept. 17 to Oct. 8. 


Vegetable Mucilage. By W. Kirchner and B. Tollens. — The authors, after 
a critical review of the various investigations that have been made in connection 
with this subject, describe their process for the purification of the mucilage, which 
is very similar to Schmidt's. The mucilage, after the addition of hydrochloric acid, 
is precipitated by alcohol and, when the operation has been repeated six or eight 
times, the product is repeatedly washed with absolute alcohol, and finally with ether. 
By this means the ash is reduced to a minimum, and the mucilage, when dried, is 
obtained as a porous mass, and not in hard lumps. 

Quince mucilage was obtained principally from quince seeds, by digesting them in 
water for four hours, then rubbing them through a hair sieve, boiling, and straining 
through linen. After purification it is greyish-white and swells up, when soaked in 
water, to a gelatinous mass, forming a mucilaginous solution only on the addition 
of a small quantity of potassium hydrate. It still contains 4 to 5 per cent, of min- 
eral matter, and on analysis gives numbers corresponding with the formula C 18 H 28 O u . 
When it is boiled with dilute sulphuric acid, white flocks are precipitated, and sugar 
and dextrin or gum are produced. From the results of numerous carefully con- 
ducted quantitative experiments, it would seem that the flocculent precipitate of 
cellulose is nearly constant after the first half-hour, however long the boiling may be 
continued, but the percentage of gum gradually decreases, whilst that of the sugar 
increases within certain limits, showing the conversion of the former into the latter. 
The gum polarizes laevorotary ; the sugar, which reduces cupric solution, dextro- 

* Lenoir, Wagn. Jahresbcr., 1867, 219, 259. 



J Am. Jour. Pharrn: 
\ Jan. 1876. 

rota j y. The flocculent precipitate, amounting to about 36 per cent., gives the reac- 
tions of cellulose with iodine, but in the analysis the carbon comes out slightly 
higher than that required by the formula C 6 H 10 O 5 . This is probably due to the 
presence of some impurity similar to the compound found in fir-wood by J. Erd- 

Linseed Mucilage. — Linseed treated in a manner similar to that above described 
gave numbers corresponding with the formula C 6 H 10 O 5 , or the same as that of cellu- 
lose. When boiled with dilute sulphuric acid, it decomposes like quince mucilage^ 
but with much greater difficulty, gum and sugar being formed, and the former being 
gradually converted into the latter by long-continued boiling The insoluble resi- 
due is very much smaller than with quince mucilage, being only about 4 per cent. 

Fleabane Mucilage. — This has the formula C 36 H 58 29 . Boiled with acid, it decom- 
poses like the other mucilages, yielding gum and sugar, but in this instance the gum 
is completely converted into dextrorotary sugar by long-continued boiling. 

From these results the authors infer that in quince mucilage the cellulose exists in 
combination with the gum, since no cellulose can be distinguished as such by micro- 
scopical examination, and as the two substances exist in the ratio 1 : 2, it is most 
probably a true chemical compound : 

C 6 H 10 O 5 + 2C 6 H 10 O 5 = C 18 H 28 14 + H 2 0. 
Cellulose. Gum. Mucilage. 

It has yet to be determined whether the other two mucilages are distinct, or 
whether they are compounds of cellulose and gum in the proportion 1 : 2, mixed 
with excess of gum : the different behavior of the fleabane mucilage when treated 
with acid from that of the quince would, however, seem to preclude this view. 

The concluding portion of the paper is occupied with theoretical speculations as 
to the manner in which the carbohydrates may become transformed, the one into 
the other — Jour. Chem. Soc. [Lond.], Nov., 1875, from Annalen der C/iemie, clxxv, 

Mutual Displacement of Acetic and Formic Acids. By H. Lescceur. — 
It is generally known that formic acid can expel acetic acid from its combinations, 
but inversely acetic acid has been found also to displace formic acid. When a 
mixture of acetic acid and sodium formate is distilled, a very considerable quantity 
of formic acid is found in the distillate, but even with a large excess of acetic acid 
complete decomposition of the formate was never obtained. 

The majority of the formates soluble in acetic acid are decomposible in like man- 
ner, some indeed without even the application of heat ; thus, potassium formate dis- 
solves in acetic acid, and if allowed to evaporate spontaneously, gives a residue con- 
sisting mainly of potassium acetate. There would appear, therefore, to be an 
equilibrium established between the quantity of formic acid set at liberty, and 
acetate formed in a manner similar to that which has been noticed in many other 
instances b*y different operators. 

When one part of sodium formate is dissolved with heat in five parts of mono- 
hydrated acetic acid, crystals are obtained on cooling, which were found to have 
the composition, NaC 2 H 3 2 .2C 2 H 4 2 -+- NaCH0 2 .2CH 2 2 .— Journ. Chem. Soc, 
November, 1875, fr° m Bull. Soc. Chim. [2], xxiii. 259. 

'■'fcsjfc } Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. 37 


The third regular meeting of the session was held December 21st, 1875, Dr. W 
H. Pile in the chair. Number in attendance, sixty. The minutes of the previous 
meeting were read and approved. 

Prof. Maisch presented to the library, on behalf of J. C. Rumph, a catalogue 
and price list of Materia Medica, " Catalogus et Valor Materiae Medicae, seu 
medicamentorum simpiicium et compositorum in officinis Molhusinis prostantium," 
printed in 1715. Besides much curious information, it contains the oaths, as 
administered to apothecaries and physicians in the beginning of last century. 
Charles Bullock thought the disposition to present such works ought to be 
encouraged ; they would be valuable for our library, as giving the antiquities 
of our business. Prof. Remington called attention to the suggestion that had 
been made by W. C. Bakes, of making a collection of pharmaceutical books 
and apparatus possessing historical interest. Wm. Mclntyre presented a copy 
of " The Popular Health Almanac," and a press for sealing wafer capsules. 

Prof. Remington read a paper on aloin, by Charles L. Mitchell, (see page 24). 
Prof. Maisch asked for further information, concerning the extract described as 
being made from the mother liquid after the separation of the crystals of aloin. 
Prof. Remington said it had the appearance of a good extract. Some members, 
however, thought that it should not be used for the extract of aloes, as officinal in 
some European pharmacopoecias. I. J. Grahame believed the results claimed for 
the administration of aloin, as a substitute for aloes, had not been realized. The 
thereapeutic effect of the various aloins is different ; it is sold at a high price, and 
requires to be given in comparatively large doses. On the other hand, aloes is used 
more frequently as a laxative than as a cathartic, and with a good article, the dose 
is not large. 

Wm. Mclntyre read a paper on wafer capsules, as a means of administration of 
medicines (see page 25). Prof. Maisch said wafers in sheets, had long been in 
use in Europe for this purpose. The introduction of the wafer capsules, by 
Limousin, had at first materially increased this mode of medication ; but it appeared 
that their use there was already on the decline, and he believed their apparent 
advantages would not supplant the American methods now in use. R. V. Mattison 
had become familiar with them two years ago, while in the West, where their use 
had greatly diminished j he regarded them as an elegant novelty. James Kemble 
related an incident, showing that sheet wafers had been used in Pennsylvania years 
ago, for the administration of powders, the wafer being rendered pliable by dipping 
it into water. Prof. Remington had used the capsules to a great extent, found them 
to answer a good purpose and claimed for them rapidity of action. Prof. Maisch 
suggested that a solution would act with still greater rapidity. Charles Bullock did 
not believe that a greater amount of action could be claimed by the choice of one 
form of administration over another. The effect of a pill is equal to that of a 
powder, it may require a little more time 5 but will frequently cause the medicine to 
be retained when the stomach would reject the same medicines when given in 
some other form. J. B. McElroy had used the French wafers, and considered them 

38 Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. { Am 7aT; 8 P 7 6? rm * 

very neat. E. C. Jones claimed the use of a press as unneccessary, having seen the 
rim of two turned wood boxes used as a substitute. Prof. Remington said that 
two empty morphia bottles had been used by some in place of a press. 

On motion, the papers read were referred to the publication committee. 

Prof. Maisch exhibited a series of botanical models, made by Robert Brendel, of 
Berlin, Germany, which have been recently imported, to be used for the illustration 
of the lectures on botany and Materia Medica. These models are faithful 
representations of the flowers and other parts of plants belonging to different 
natural orders, magnified to such an extent that the different parts can be readily 
seen at sOme distance ; they are painted in the natural colors of the organs which 
they represent, and many of them can be taken apart so as to exhibit their internal 
structure. Amongst the models shown were those of Aconitum Napellus, Viola 
tricolor, Conium maculatum, Hypericum perforatum, Maruta cotula, Digitalis purpurea, 
Colchicum autumnale, Atropa belladonua, the flowers of the potato, strawberry, 
apple, cherry and others, the entire series comprising sixty-five numbers, of which 
twenty-five consist of from two to four distinct models. 

E. M. Boring directed the attention of the meeting to the following prescription : 

Jfc Quiniae sulphatis, ....... gr.xvi 

Tinct. ferri chloridi, ...... f5iss 

Acidi phosphorici diluti, " . . . . . foi 

Syrupi, ....... fSiss 

Aquae, q.s. ad. ...... fSiv 

A white precipitate being formed, the ingredients were mixed in various ways,, 
and the quinia dissolved in the necessary quantity of dilute muriatic acid, with the 
effect merely of delaying the appearance of the precipitate. The phosphoric acid 
used had been made of phosphorus, and the precipitate, having been found to be 
ferric phosphate, several other samples of dilute phosphoric acid were procured and 
tested with solution of ferric chloride containing no free acid, by adding 3 drops of 
the former and 2 drops of the iron solution to one drachm of water, when precipi- 
tates would occur. Upon reversing the proportions, using 2 drops of acid and 3 of 
iron, two of the samples gave precipitates, one became opalescent and two remained 
clear. One of the latter had been made by Prof. Markoe's process. On mixing the 
acid with an equal quantity of tincture of iron, diluting this with water, as directed 
in the prescription, one-half the quantity of the quinia was added, and the solution 
remained perfectly clear, while the whole quantity of quinia ordered almost imme- 
diately caused the appearance of a precipitate. The inference drawn from his ex- 
perience was, that testing with neutral chloride of iron some definite proportion 
should be given, because if carried to very dilute solution the resulting phosphate 
of iron would not remain in solution. This was not so readily observed in using the 
tincture of chloride of iron, which contains free hydrochloric acid. 

I. J. Grahame had met with the difficulty as early as 1868. He had been able to 
prepare an acid from the glacial acid that would mix clear with tincture of chloride 
of iron by prolonging the time of heating. The details of the " Pharmacopoeia " 
he regarded as not specific enough in this case. 

Dr. Pile said all the glacial phosphoric acid that had lately been examined was 
found to contain phosphate of sodium, and no means of getting rid of this contami- 
nation had been presented R. V. Mattison thought that if we are aware of this. 

Am 'j j a°n ur i8^6. arm '} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 39 

adulteration, it would not be proper to prepare the medicinal acid from it. There 
is some difficulty in getting rid of the nitric acid, and too high a heat will generate 
pyrophosphoric acid. 

Prof. Remington suggested, that if an acid which would not at first mix clear 
with the tincture, were allowed to stand some time, a change would take place \ and 
said that an acid could not be made from the glacial acid that would answer fo r 
this purpose unless free nitric acid was purposely left in it. Prof. Maisch 
did not agree in this statement. Like Prof. Grahame, he had observed glacial phos- 
phoric acid containing sodium compound to be completely converted into ortho- 
phosphoric acid ; it is an old method, practiced in analytical laboratories, to con- 
vert pyrophosphates into orthophosphates, by boiling them with nitric acid. He 
had pointed out, three years ago, to a number of persons, the cause of the difficulty 
with the dilute phosphoric acid made from glacial acid. J. W. Worthington had 
avoided this difficulty by preparing the acid from phosphorus, procured from the 
manufactory on the Rancocas, which he believed was the only one of the kind in 
the country. 

Dr. Pyle had tested the acid prepared by Prof. Markoe's process for ammonia, 
by saturating with caustic soda, but did not perceive any odor of ammonia. A 
sample of an acid, prepared by the same process by A. P. Brown, was tested by 
Prof. Maisch, and found to contain some ammonia. 

Dr. A. W. Miller read the following note on " Substitution of Gentiana catesbaei C 

kl Mr. M. E. Hyams, of Statesville, N. C, in a recent communication to the writer, states it as his 
firm belief that no true root of Gentiana catesbaei is to be found in the market. Mr. Hyams states, that 
among the gatherers in the South the Triosteum fierfoliatum is known as American gentian, and there- 
fore invariably sent out as blue gentian, although there is a marked difference in the appearance of the 
two roots, as well as in that of the plants. 

"The term 'horse gentian' is given by Gray as a synonym for the triosteum. According to Mr. 
Hyams, none of the gatherers in his vicinity are acquainted with the true Gentiana catesbaei." 

Prof. Maisch had, some years ago, tried to get specimens of the two roots for his 
cabinet, but could find none in the market. The two have no resemblance what- 
ever, the subterraneous portion of Triosteum being a knotty, horizontal rhizome, 
with long woody roots, while the gentian has a true root, resembling that of Genti- 
ana lutea, but being much smaller and lighter in color. 

Dr. Miller suggested, that as the gatherers were bringing it in, there must be 
purchasers for it somewhere. 

A. P. Brown presented two specimens of spirit of nitrous ether ; one a commer- 
cial article, the other made in his store. In addition to containing the proper 
amount of nitrous ether, about 5 per cent., it makes a transparent mixture with 
copaiba, which the commercial article fails to do. 

Adjourned to meet on January 18, at 8 o'clock P. M. 



New York Alumni Association of Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. — 
The regular monthly meeting was held in Plimpton Hall, Tuesday evening, Decem- 
ber 7th. 

40 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. { Am j J aa. r "i8 P 7 6 arm ' 

Mr. Thos. D. McElhenie read the following paper : 

Linimentum Iodoformi. — Having frequent occasion lately to dispense iodoform for topical applica- 
tion, I made some experiments to ascertain the best solvent. Without detailing all the results, the follow- 
ing is offered. Almond oil was selected, as its blandness fits it for application to inflamed throats : 

Take of Iodoform 

Camphor aa Si 3i 

01. sassafras 5i 

01. amygdali dulc §iv 

Powder the iodoform and camphor, introduce into a dry vial, add the oils, and heat in a water-bath, 
shaking frequently until dissolved. The camphor has the property of increasing the solubility of iodo- 
form in oils, but not in alcohol, and, with the essential oil, serves to cover the odor to which some persons 

Mr. Wellcome read a paper on the action of solutions of molybdic acid and mo- 
lybdates in sulphuric acid, as tests for determining the presence of certain organic 
bodies. He demonstrated by experiments that such tests were unreliable (see page 
21 ). He also presented some specimens of Grindelia squarrosa, which he had 
received from Dr. Bundy, of California. Another species, Grindelia robusta, has 
received some attention as an antidote for poisoning by Rhus toxicodendron^ and on 
account of the hypnotic properties ascribed to it j it formed the subject of a paper 
by Mr. Steele at the last meeting of the American Pharmaceutical Association. 
Grindelia squarrosa is distinguished from that plant by the flower-head being more 
compact, with the scalesmore firm, and terminating in hard, slender and spreading 
tips. Its medicinal properties are said to be similar to those of Gr. robusta. 

Some discussion ensued regarding the wafer capsules (cachet de pain), which are 
being introduced as the model medium for administering nauseous powders. All 
who had used them spoke of them as a pleasing thing in theory, but practically a 
nuisance rather than a boon. They were first introduced into Paris about three 
years ago, and seem to have met with but little favor in Europe, and to deserve the 
same here. 

Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain — At the pharmaceutical meet- 
ing held November 3d, President T. H. Hills in the chair, a paper on the analysis 
of cinchona bark was read by Mr. Edward L. Cleaver, in which several processes 
recommended for this purpose were criticized, and a new process suggested, the 
essential features of which are that a paste of 100 grams of powdered bark and 25 
grams of slaked lime is carefully dried and then exhausted with hot methylated 
spirit,- the liquor is acidulated with sulphuric acid, the spirit distilled off, the 
remaining liquid filtered and evaporated to dryness with pure carbonate of barium, 
the residue being exhausted with alcohol, which, on evaporation, leaves the total 
amount of mixed alkaloids ; these are exhausted with ether, the solution evaporated, 
the alkaloids dissolved in dilute sulphuric acid, the solution heated to boiling, and 
rendered faintly alkaline by caustic soda, when, on cooling, sulphate of quinia crys- 
tallizes out ; the mother-liquor retains one part of the same salt for every 300 parts, 
by measure, of the liquid. 

In the discussion following, Dr. Paul, Messrs. Linford and Umney, Prof. Red- 
wood and Attfield took part, some sources of inaccuracies being pointed out. 

Mr. Nelson T. Carrington read a paper on the chemical formula of commercial 
molybdate of ammonium, which, from his analyses, he assumes to be NH 4 HMo0 4 . 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 



Mr. Thos. Greenish read an interesting paper on Pharmacy in Portugal, in which, 
among other valuable information, it is stated that Portuguese physicians frequently 
prescribe foreign nostrums, which are largely imported from France, America and 

British Pharmaceutical Conference — At the meetings of the Executive 
Committee, held in November and December, £75 was granted, in sums ranging 
from £5 to £20, to eight gentlemen, to aid them in undertaking researches on spe- 
cial subjects, the results to be communicated to the next annual meeting, at Glas- 
gow, September 5th and 6th. 

The Secretaries announced that the " Year-book " for 1875 was m type, that it 
would extend to six huudred and fifty pages, that it would be published on or about 
the nlh of December, and that a copy would be sent, post-free, to every member 
who had paid his annual subscription. 


The Forty-eighth Volume of this Journal begins with the present number, 
and fully half a century has passed by since the first number of what has subsequently 
been called the preliminary volume was issued, in 1825, its regular and uninter- 
rupted publication, however, dating from the year 1829, since which time a volume 
has been issued every year. From a quarterly the Journal became a bi-monthly, 
and, finally, a monthly publication, and its usefulness has made it a welcome visitor 
to many who are interested in pharmacy, here and abroad. For this we are, in 
a great measure, indebted to our contributors, who communicated the results of 
their observations or researches, and we are pleased that the present volume opens 
so propitiously, with a large amount of original matter from different contributors. 
It is true that the pharmacist, actively engaged in business, has little leisure for 
literary labor, but it is equally true that, " where there is a will, there is also a way." 
The occasions for observations are numerous, even while following the daily routine of 
business, and if these were noted down and published, they would add to the gen- 1 
eral stock of knowledge. Amongst the contributors to our last volume, we had the 
pleasure of welcoming several for the first time, and we take this occasion to invite 
our readers generally to join the list of those who, for a longer or shorter period, 
have contributed to these pages, and to record therein their practical observations, 

well as their scientific researches. 

Postal Matters. — Our special thanks are due to our friends in New York, who 
kindly informed us that the post-office in that city had demanded the payment of 
double letter postage on the December number, on account of the " Special notice 
to Subscribers " stitched into it, ruling the same to be an enclosure. The matter 
was at once referred, through the Postmaster of Philadelphia, to the Post-office De- 
partment in Washington, from which, under date of December 14th, 1875, tne 
following reply was received : 


Reviews, etc. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 

" Sir; — The publications and letter, submitted with your two letters of 8th Dec, are herewith re- 
turned, with the information that the New York office has been advissd that printed matter, stitched into 
the body of a magazine, and having reference to the business of its publishers, is held to be an integral 
part thereof, and not of the character of matter referred to in Section 142 Laws, or 91 of the Regulations. 
" I am, &c, 

(Signed) J. W. MARSHALL, 1st Asst. P. M. Genl. 
' " GEO. W, FAIRMAN, Esq., Postmaster, Philadelphia, Pa." 

The Postmaster of New York has informed the Business Editor that the detained 

Journals had been delivered immediately after the above decision had been received. 

Lead in Muriatic Acid. — Messrs. G. Mallinckrodt & Co , of St. Louis, Mo , 
have submitted to us a letter from Mr. Fred. Reppert, of Muscatine, Iowa, in which 
it is stated that the solution of chloride of iron examined by him, and found to con- 
tain lead (see December number, 1875, p 575), had not been obtained from that 
manufacturing house. 


The Popular Health Almanac for 1876. Edited by Frederick Hoffmann. New 
York: E. Steiger. iamo, pp. 44. 

Tasclxenbuch der Geheimmittellehre. Eine kritische Uebersicht aller bis jetzt unter- 
suchten Geheimmittel, zunachst fur Aerzte und Apotheker, dann zur Belehrung 
und Warnung fiir Jedermann. Herausgegeben von Dr G. C. Wittstein. Vierte 
sehr stark vermehrte Auflage. Nordlingen : C. H. Beck'scheBuchhandlung. 1876, 
12VO, pp. 301. 

Compendium of Secret Medicines. A critical review of all secret medicines an- 
alyzed up to the present time. For physicians and pharmacists, also for the in- 
struction and warning of everybody. Edited by Dr. G. C. Wittstein. Fourth 
edition, much enlarged. 

The tendency of the above two works is the same in their aim, to expose the 
frauds and dangers connected with the manufacture or with the use of the secret or 
so-called patent medicines. Dr. Wittstein's work was introduced to our readers 
some years ago, when we published a number of formulas contained in the third 
edition (see "Amer. Journ. Pharm.," 1871, p. 111). That in less than ten years — 
the first edition appeared in 1866 — four editions have become necessary, proves the 
usefulness of the work, and that the labor of its editor as a compiler and analyst is 
well appreciated. The present volume contains the composition of about 800 or 
more nostrums, cosmetics, disinfectants, etc., the composition of which has been 
kept secret by the inventors and manufacturers. Amongst that number we find the 
United States well represented, considering that the volume is in the first line in- 
tended to find its field of usefulness on the continent of Europe. There is, how- 
ever, evidently much room for greater activity in the way of exposing the compo- 
sition of the numerous nostrums, whether patented or not, with which we are blessed 
on this side of the Atlantic, and which are imported from the other side to supply 
any possible deficiency as to variety of style and composition 5 and we would im- 

Am. Jour Pharm. ) 
Jan. 1876. j 

Reviews, etc. 


press the young pharmacists, particularly those who are in quest of subjects for their 
thesis, not to neglect this promising and important field of original investigation and 

" The Popular Health Almanac," to which repeated allusion has been made in 
our last volume, pursues rather a didactic course, by giving useful information on 
all subjects connected with health matters. In its present garb, it is intended for 
gratuitous distribution by the pharmacist, whose business card is printed on the 
cover j but those who would desire to make a nominal charge for it, could, we 
suppose, have the words, " Presented by," altered to " From." As to the contents 
of the almanac, we find an admirably written " Introductory," four brief articles on 
"Applied Health Knowledge," three on " First help in Accidents and Emergen- 
cies," and on " Nostrums and their Composition," an enumeration of "Popular 
works on the subject of health," a number of " Statistical tables," and various other 
valuable information. Both editor and publisher are deserving of praise for the 
manner in which this first number has been prepared. May it be the forerunner of 
a long series of annual publications which, in the beginning, promise to fulfill an 
important missson in the distribution, among the people, of sound information on 
the various subjects affecting the health of the individual as well as of the public. 

We take great pleasure in recommending both the above works, Dr. Wittstein's. 
book more particularly to those who are familiar with the German language, the 
" Health Almanac " to everyone of our readers ; and it is our belief that the phar- 
macist engaged in business will be amply repaid for the small outlay incurred in 
procuring this publication (250 copies for $10) for the use of his customers. It 
certainly possesses an intrinsic value which is not foun4 in all the nostrum almanacs 

Proceedings of the American Pharmaceutical Association at the Twenty-third Annual 
Meeting, held in Boston, Mass., September, 1875. Philadelphia : Sherman & Co., 
printers. 1875. 8vo, pp. 899. Price, in paper covers, $7.00, bound, cloth, 

This is the largest, and we believe also, the most interesting volume issued by the 
Association, for which it was deemed desirable to use a more calendered paper than 
for the previous issues. About 460 pages are occupied by the " Report on the 
Progress of Pharmacy," 70 pages by reports of committees, 180 pages by original 
papers, and the remainder by the minutes, constitution, roll of members, etc. An 
excellent likeness of the late Professor Edward Parrish, printed from a steel-plate 
engraving, and over 60 wood-cuts embellish the work. 

The volume is now in the hands of the binder, and will be issued to all entitled 
during the present month. Copies of it, or of complete sets of the proceedings, may 
be obtained by addressing the Permanent Secretary, Prof. J. M. Maisch, Philadelphia. 

A Text- Book of Human Physiology j designed for the use of Practitioners and Stu - 
dents of Medicine. By Austin Flint, Jr., M. D. New York : D. Appleton & 
Co., 1876. 8vo, pp. 978. 

The completion of the author's large treatise on "The Physiology of Man" has 
been noticed on page 494 of our volume for 1874; the work before us is a conden- 
sation of those five volumes into one, to render it more adapted for fhe daily wants 


Reviews, etc. 

J Am. Jour. Pharm. 
( Jan. 1876. 

of the student and practitioner. It is illustrated by three lithographic plates and 
313 woodcuts, many of which are exact reproductions from the works of celebrated 
Investigators. The work will be found a valuable addition to the library of the 
medical student and practitioner. 

The reception of the following publications is hereby acknowledged: 

The Chemists and Druggists" Diary for 1876. 4to. It is presented to every annual 
subscriber of the " Chemist and Druggist." 4. 

Transactions of the i^th Anniversary Meeting of the Illinois State Medical Society, 
held May, 1875. Chicago, 1875. 8vo, pp. 288. 

Manitou, Colorado, U. S. A., its Mineral Waters and Climate. By S. Edwin Solly, 
M. R. C. S. 1875. St. Louis: J. McKittrick & Co. 8vo, pp. 40. 

Battefs Operation. By Dav. W. Yandell, M. D., and Ely McClellan, M. D, 
Louisville, 1875. 8vo > PP- l6 - Reprinted from the "American Practitioner," 
for October, 1875. 

Untersuchungen uber den Einfluss der Temperatur auf BakterienlVegetation. Von 
Leonid Bucholtz, Stud. Med. Investigations on the Influence of Temperature 
upon the growth of Bacteria. The experiments were made in Prof. Dragen- 
dorfPs laboratory at Dorpat. 

Cactus, its History, Classification, Proving, and Therapeutical Application. By Rich. 
E. Kunze, M. D., of New York. Albany, 1875. 8vo, pp. 33. Read before 
the New York Eclectic Medical Society. 


Heinrich Hermann Hlasiwetz was born at Reichenberg, Bohemia, April 7th, 
1825. After studying chemistry in Jena, he became assistant at the chemical labor- 
atory at Prague, and in 185 1 Professor of Chemistry at Insbruck. Subsequently 
he accepted a call to Vienna, where he labored in a like capacity until the time of 
his death, which occurred, suddenly, on the morning of October 8th, by apoplexy. 
The deceased was widely known as an earnest and careful investigator, many of his 
researches having been undertaken in conjunction with Rochleder. 

r R. P. Clayton, of Dover, Del., died, suddenly, last October, in this city, where 
he was learning the apothecary business. He was a promising young man, and 
intended to graduate here next spring. In respect to his memory, his classmates 
will wear a badge of mourning at the next commencement. 

Correction. — On page 536 of our last number, line 3 from top, read salt for 
solution, and on page 563, line 19 from top, reader, ct. in place of pint. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. < 
Jan. 1876. J 

Catalogue of the Class. 


Class of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy 


With a List of their Preceptors and Localities. 


Touun\or County. 

Ahl, William Frank. 
Ainsworth, Frank Kenley. 
Allen, John Reese. 
Anstett, Zachary Taylor. 
Appenzeller, Gustav. 
Armstrong, Thomas Swain. 
Bache, Benjamin Franklin. 
Baker, Walter Sheron. 
Ball, William Amos. 
Barnes, Thomas. 
Barr, john Rufus. 
Barr, Samuel Earnest. 
Barton, Charles Edwin. 
Baum, Franklin Derr. 
Baur, Hugo Franklin. 
Behlar, John. 
Bissell, Emery Gilbert. 
Bley, Alphonso Albert Willits 
Bobb, Edwin George. 
Bobb, Wallace Geary, 
Bodinhorn, Adam. 
Boeiner, Emil Louis. 
Boileau, Wm. Norwood K. 
Boisnot, Frederick Styker. 
Bond, Charles Mahlon. 
Botsford, Chipman. 
Bowen, Daniel Albert. 
Bowman, Chas. Alexander. 
Boyer, Edward Dayton. 
Boyer, Hiram. 
Brennecke, Robert Henry. 
Brenton, Willis. 
Brotherline, Chas. Augustus. 
Brown, David Howard. 
Brown, George Walbridge. 
Brown, Joseph John. 
Buchanan, Andrew. 
Bullock, John Griscom. 
Burge, James Oscar. 
Burns, Simon Snowden. 
Busch, Wm. Carl Assuns. 
Byerly, Chas. Henry. 
Cahoon, Charles Thomas. 
Carbonell, Louis Phillip. 
Carmany, Aaron Washington 
Carmichael, Henry. 
Case, Flavius Saunders. 
Chabot, Washington Jackson 
Chambers, John Roberts. 
Chardavoyne, Wm. Simpson. 
Childs, Walter Foss. 
Cook, Thomas Penrose. 
Corbyn, Theophilus Niblow. 
Cotzhausen, Louis von. 
Cowperthwaite, Marshall S. 
Cox, Harry. 
Cox, John Custis. 
Coxey, Joseph Clarence. 
Craighead, Thomas. 











Chester City, 

Mount Yernon, 










Iowa City, 


Franklin Park, 

Fort Wayne, 

St. John, New Brun. 

W. Bridgeton, 












Bowling Green, 



Lock Haven, 


Santiago de Cuba, 




























D. C, 

N. Y. 

















N. Y. 

N. Y. 




£ y - 










N. J. 

N. J. 




N. J. 



N. J. 



Dr. David Ahl. 
Sturtevant Bros. 
James Kemble. 
P. J. L. Carberry, M. D. 
R. Opperman. 
James T. Shinn. 
Bullock & Crenshaw. 
James Jones, M. D. 
J. L. Patterson & Bro. 
Mackeown, Bower & Ellis 
John H. Kerlin. 

E. P. Camp. 

W. W. Moorhead. 

P. M. Zeigler. 

C. C. Spannagel. 

G, A. Bachmann, M. D. 

W. J. Bissell. 

John Bley. 

J. Ritz. 

V. H. Smith & Co. 

Dr. D. H. Leslie. 

Wm.C. Bakes. 

Clarence T. Smith, M, D. 

Willard M. Reil. 

C. E. Cady,M. D. 

Hance Bros. & White. 

Geo. H. Whipple. 

Haddox & Ford. 

Dr. C.K. Christman. 

F. G- Thoman. 
Samuel Campbell. 
Powers & Weightman. 
Francis Zerman, M. D. 
Lancaster Bros. 
A.C Hembold. 

Jos. P. Remington. 
M. H. Bickley. 
Bullock & Crenshaw. 
John H. Smith. 
Wm. Bowen. 
Henry Ditzen. 
Mortimer H. Eayer. 
W. S.Radcliff. 
J. P. Remington. 
M. L. Gates, M. D. 
Prof. G. Hendricks. 

E. B. Garrigues & Co . 
J. F. Hillary. 

W. L. Jasner. 

F. B. Poley. 
Powers & Weightman. 
Aschenbach & Miller. 
Henry Biroth. 

John A. Vandegrift. 
Wm. E. Lee. 

G. W. Ouram. 

H. W. Miller. 
Geo. S. Craighead. 

Catalogue of the Class. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 


Tow 71 or County. 

Creighton, Benjamin Thomas 
Crowl, Frank Mercer. 
Daniel, Charles Albert. 
Davidson, Abraham. 
Davis, Isaac. 

Davis, Theodore Garrison. 
Dembinski, Louis. 
DePuy, Casper Edward. 
Dickerson, William Eunice. 
Dilg, Philipp Henry. 
Diller, Isaac Roland. 
Dilworth, Edwin Thatcher. 
Dranconrt, Samuel. 
Durborow, Chas. Maney C. 
Eisner, Moritz. 
Emanuel, Louis. 
Endicott, John Franklin. 
Evans, John Henry. 
Farwell, Charles Darius. 
Fisher, Henry. 
Fleming, Wm. Fullerton. 
Fraser, Robert Peden. 
Frishell, George. 
Friih, Ernest. 
Friih, Gustav Adolph. 
Fry, Wilbur Winthrop. 
Fulton, Joseph Miller. 
Funk, Christian Lawson. 
Gatchel, Rudolph Edmund. 
Geiger, Geo. Lambert. 
Gentsch, Daniel Conrad. 
Gerling, John Miller. 
Gingrich, Ezra Heisey. 
Goess, Geo. Conrad, Jr. 
Graber, Leon Joseph K. 
Graham, Geo. Harris. 
Gray, Geo. Washington. 
Griffin, Louis Franklin. 
Griffith, Charles. 
Groves, John Dowling. 
Guckes, Philip. 
Hallberg, Carl Swante X. 
Harris, Chas. Greene. 
Harris, Park. 
Harris, Wm. 
Hartzell, Alfred Kerr. 
Hayhurst, Henry Tower. 
Hendershott, Jos. Newton. 
Herrmann, Ernest Wm. 
Higgins, W. R. 
Hill, Edward, 
Holden, George Blake. 
Hooper, Oliver Pascall. 
Hooven, Wilbur Thos. 
Hoguet, William. 
Hornberger, Chas. Eugene. 
Hudgin, Edward Leo. 
Huntzinger, Jno. Franklin. 
Huston, Thos. Albert. 
Jackson, Geo. Henry. 
Johnson, Jno. Geo. 
Jones, Theodosia. 
Kay, Joseph Jr. 
Keeney, Wm. Reynolds. 
Keller, Alvin Henry, 
Keneagy, John. 
Kernan, Jos. Halbert. 
Kilbride, Jas. Jackson. 
Kimmel, Wm. Alexander. 
Kindig, Isaiah Henry S. 
Kinport, Philip Stein. 
Klopp, Eli Leinbach. 
Koehler, Otto Furchtegott. 
Koehler, Walter Newcombe. 
Kolp, Jacob Loudenslager. 
Kompel, Robert August. 
Kram, Geo. Washington. 
Kramer, Howard Samuel. 








Iowa Falls, 












New London, 


New Philadelphia, 











West Chester, 









East New Market, 

E.Mauch Chunk, 





Mount Vernon, 

Mahanoy City, 








White Deer Mills, 
































Nova Scotia. 


















N. J. 






























D. P Pancoast. 

Geo. Cook. 

D. Augustus Jones. 

G. A. Steer. 

G. H. Davis. 

Chas. F. Dare. 

A. Opperman. 
Fister & Hoag. 

Dr. W. T. Dickerson, 
Kirst & Gerhardy. 
R. W. Diller. 
L. M. England. 
Wyeth & Bro. 

B. F. Johnson. 
Cramer & Small. 
P. Walter, Jr. 

D. L. Stackhouse. 
Dr. David Harrison. 

C. H. Warren, 
W. H. Walling. 
Dr. J. A. Cantrell. 

J. D. B. Fraser & Son. 
Cramer & Small. 
Carl D. S. Friih. 

Dr. James Fulton. 
H. C. Blair's Sons, 
W. B. Webb. 
Dr. E. Worrall. 
Geo. F. Gentsch. 
Vaupel & Hoare. 
Asa Jones. 
Val Smith & Co. 
Hess & Snyder. 
Israel J. Graham. 
Isaac Tull. 
Chas. B. Evans. 

C. F. Frazer. 
Dr. M. F. Groves. 

S. M. Sellers. 
E. S. Ballard & Co. 
Jos. S. Evans. 
Robert Howarth. 
Henry Hartzell, M. D. 

D. B. Colby. 

N. J. Hendershott. 
H. Frasch. 
Wm. Greene, M. D. 
Wordle Ellis. 

C. H. Robinson. 
W. H. Wallace. 
Louis A. Hoguet. 
C. E. Haenchen, 
Isaac W, Smith. 
R. J. Mohr, M. D. 
Caleb R. Keeney. 

E. E. Hazlett. 

C. Smith, M. D. 
Howard Hospital. 
J. A. Braddock. 
Caleb R. Keeney. 
Caleb H. Needles. 
J. R. Hamilton. 
T. J. Husband, Jr. 
Geo. J, Kilbride. 
E. H. Marshall. 

D. S. Wiltberger. 
Clement B. Lowe. 
Samuel Gerhard. 
Chas. W. Gmelin. 
Chas. E. Davis. 
C. Henry Kolp. 

Van Buskirk & Apple. 
Martin & Weigner. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jan. 1876. 

Catalogue of the Class. 

Matriculants. Tot 

Kratz, Mahlon. 
Kiogman, Joseph Francis. 
Krupp, Louis. 
Kuhlman, William. 
Laciar, Henry Jacob 
Lamhofer, Edward. 
Landschiitz, Peter. 
Lardner, William Shepard. 
Lashell, Charles Ludwig. 
Latham, Jr., Daniel Henry. 
Layer, Philip Jacob. 
Laws, Edward Mortimer. 
Lehman, John Wesley. 
Lewis, Chas. Henry. 
Lewis, John Jones. 
Lewis, William Thompson. 
Linn, Jacob. 
Lins, Frank Pierce. 
Linthicum, Theodric. 
Lippincott, Charles Drum. 
Lits, Walter Rulp. 
Llewllyn, William Harry. 
Lock, John Herman. 
Logan, Harry Weaver. 
Loper, Lorenzo Dow. 
Louderbough, Frank Pierce. 
Loy, Edgar Turner. 
Lustig, pjmil. 
McFerren. Jeremiah Dull. 
McKeehan, Geo. Henry. 
McMullin, Albert. 
McMullin, Andrew. 
McNeil, Robert, Jr. 
Mackenson, Alonzo Geo. 
Marquardt, Carl Heinrich. 
Marshall, Clara. 
Martin, Geo. Jr. 
Martin, John Albert. 
Martin, John Chrysostom. 
Mebus, Fred'k Leonard. 
Merritt, Joseph Wayne. 
Miller, Sylvester Edwin. 
Miller, Wm. Leland. 
Mitsch, George Joseph. 
Moenkemoeller, Chas. 
Moore, Frank. 
Moore, Richard Jesse. 
Moser, John Hendricks. 
Mu'lins, Michael Martin A. 
Murray, Francis Marion. 
Myers, Edwin. 
Oleson, Martin Olaf. 
O'Neill, George. 
Pabst, Otto. 

Parker, Frederick Henry. 
Phillips, Jocob Franklin. 
Phillips, Thos. Jefferson W. 
Podolski, Louis Adolph. 
Poley, Francis Henry. 
Poole, William. 
Porter, Andrew Richard. 
Porter, Geo. Cooper. 
Pursell, Stacy Brown. 
Quinn, John William. 
Railey, Irwin. 
Reber, William Worrall. 
Reid, Charles Milnor. 
Rigg, Morton. 
Righter, William H., M. D. 
Risk, Clarence Henderson. 
Ritter, John. 

Robbins, William Henry. 
Robinson, William Duffield. 
Roe, Thomas Coombs. 
Roepper, Francis Abraham. 
Rogers, Joseph Collin. 
Rosenthal, David Abraham, 
Rosenwasser, Nathan. 
Ross, David Hamilton. 

Wfi or County. 





R. W. Cuthbert. 



Benjamin Falkenberg, 



H. Opperman. 
jAmes T. White. 
C. F. Goodman 



Grand Island, 




Jos. Landschiitz. 



Hansell & Bro. 



W. B. Webb. 



Wm. C. Bakes. 



John S. Erben. 



A. L. Lamb. 

Barren Hill, 
Mahanoy City, 


Barker, Moore & Mein. 


Dr. B. H. Davis. 

Mt. Carmel, 


Harry C. Fernsler. 



Joseph P. Balton. 
C. H. Kolp. 




John M. Thomas. 



J. W. Cage. 

Williamsport, 1 ! 


Milton Huber. 



E. W. Chipman. 



E. Frank Stoner. 



Dr. L. U. Hilderbrand. 



Ellis, Son & Co. 


N. J. 

H. A. Vogelbach. 



Jas. L. Shind. 



I. U. Bean. 



J. C. Longe. 

F. G. Williams & Co. 




Isaac Tull. 



A. M. Wilson. 


W. H. Pile & Sons. 



John B. Ferguson. 



Chas. M. Morell. 



A. W. Test. 



Israel J. Graham. 


A. H. Yarnall & Co. 



Walter B. Abell. 

Alleghany City, 


R. M. Snodgrass, 



D. E. Becker. 



Bullock & Crenshaw. 



N. B. Reber, M. D. 

St. Louis, 


St. Paul, 


Dreir & Mitsch. 

North East, 

W. Va. 

Geo. R. Vernon, M. D. 


Aug. Hohl. 



Thos. J. Casper. 



A. R. Slemmer. 


N. J. 

Michael Mullins. 



Yoder & Hauenstein. 



P. P. Fox. 

Fort Dodge, 


Prindle & Youst. 



Powers & Weightman. 



Guenther Pabst. 


N. Y. 

John Butler. 



M. Goldsmith. 



J. L. Bispham. 
Geo. C. Evans. 





F. B Poley, M. D. 



E. Bringhurst & Co. 



J. L. Thiebaud & Son. 

Kennett Square, 


Thomas Taylor, M. D. 



Howard Pursell. 



Charles Shivers. 



J. B. Weaver. 



N. B. Reber, M. D. 


C. H. Reid. 



Powers & Weightman. 



H. R. Bringhurst. 



Van Buskirk & Apple, 

, Chambersburg, 


Thoiricis Br3,un. 


A. Robbins. 


C. H. Cressler. 



. Bethlehem, 


Simon Rau & Co. 


N. J. 

C. J. Nice, M. D. 

. Philadelphia, 


Dr. Toboldt. 



W. H. Spieth. 



Bullock & Crenshaw. 

4 8 

Catalogue of the Class. 

Am. Jour. Pharrn. 
Jan. 187G. 


Town or County. 

Ruff, William. 
Ryerson, Henry Ogden. 
Sandt, Geo. Lewis. 
Schimminger, Geo. William. 
Scheehle, George Philip. 
Schlosser, Gerhard. 
Schools, George William. 
Schroeder, Henry. 
Schwartz, Arthur. 
Selinger, John Anthony. 
Semple, George Miller. 
Sheridan, James Henry. 
Shinn, Howard Granville. 
Sides, Howard Buckman. 
Smith, Albert Henry. 

ith, Clayton Kerper. 
Smith, Joseph Stahel. 
Smith, William Harrold. 
Sommers, Richard Miller. 
Sonnick, John William. 
Spenceley,Cornelius Ederson. 
Spengler, Allen. 
Steuben, Milton Richard. 
Stevenson, Richard Graham. 
Stewart, Frank Edward. 
Stewart, James Tait. 
Stinson, William James. 
Stockton, William Wood. 
Strickler, Jacob. 
Suess, Paul John. 
Sweitzer, Morris Kemerer. 
Taylor, Walter Adolphus. 
Taylor, Winfield Scott. 
Terrill, George Morton. 
Thorn, Albert Livingston. 
Tobey, Charles William. 
Tomlinson. Wm. H. 
Toulson, Milbourn Asbury. 
Trimble, Henry. 
Trout, Wm. Wesley. 
Trupp, Louis. 
Unangst, Eugene Peter. 
Van Gorder, Albert Hapgood. 
Walker, Henry Crawford. 
Walker, John William, Jr. 
Wallace, Ellerslie. 
Warfield, John Francis. 
Warrington, Charles W. 
Watson, Charles Henry. 
Watt, Harry Calvin. 
Webb, Morrison Wright. 
Webber, Joseph Leroy. 
Weber, Jeremiah. 
Weis, William. 
Wetser, William Puffer. 
Werckshagen, Otto. 
Wells, Eben^zer Miller. 
Wetherell, Wm. Henry. 
Wheaton, Theodore Corson. 
White, Andrew Allison. 
White, Hugh. 
Whiteside, William Elder. 
Wicker, Fred. Collins. 
Williams, Luther Thomas. 
Williams, Thomas Davis. 
Williams, William Chapman. 
Wilson, Alexander. 
Wilson, James Alexander. 
Witmcr, John Alfred. 
Witsil, George Edward. 
Wittkamp, Henry Louis von. 
Woolston, Wm. Norton Shinn 
Worley, George Melville. 
Wright, Frank Elisha. 
Wright, John Lewis. 
Zacharias, Isidore. 
Zelley, William Henry. 
Ziebach, Edwin Robert. 












So. Bethlehem, 














Mount Holly, 

New Bloomfield, 

So. Bethlehem, 















Martins burg, 
















Havre de Grace, 




Mt. Holly, 









W. Va. 








N. J. 







N. Y. 




N. J. 

N. Y. 










N. J. 










W. Va. 














N. J. 











N. J. 




N. Y. 






Charles Shivers. 
Samuel Campbell." 
R. W. Richie, M. D. 
J. W. Dallam & Co. 
W. C. Bakes. 
Dr. Rizer. 

Jas. A. Armstrong, M.'jD. 

Gale & Blocke. 

J. J. Cumming, M. D. 

John Oddy, M. D. 

H. B. Semple. 

G. C Boyer. 

H. Hutchison. 
Samuel Gerhard. 
Herm. Vogelbach. 
Samuel Campbell. 

J. R. Stevenson, M. D. 
J. P. Remington. 
C. M. Schellenger. 
Rieffenstahl Bros. 
W. A. Musson. 
W. Notson, M. D. 
H. A. Bower. 
W. R. Warner & Co. 
H. C. Blair's Sons. 
Robb R. Stewart. 
G. D. Keefer & Bro. 
J. Whitelock Smith. 
M. B. Strickler. 
William Stahler. 
Hess A Snyder. 
J. A. Taylor. 
Bullock & Crenshaw. 

G. H. Landon & Co. 
Henry Schmidt. 

E. F. Rinehart. 

B. N. Bethel, M. D. 
S. M. McCollin. 

H. C. Blair's Sons. 
J. Wendell, Jr. 
Herman Gerhard. 
Wm. Hapgood. 
Smith & Painter. 
J. L. W. Bakerr. 

R. H. Frierson. 
S. M. McCollin. 
Wetherill & Bro. 
H. C. Blair's Sons. 
Chas. L. Cumming. 
J. T. Webber & Co. 
M. Coombs. 
M. J. Cumming. 
A. P. Brown. 

C. A. Werckshagen. 
J. M. Boyle, M. D. 
Wetherill & Bro. 
Jas. N. Marks. 

Bullock & Crenshaw. 

P. S. P. Whiteside, M. D. 

Geo. O. Guy. 

H. R. Warner & Co. 

J. B. Moore. 

K. M. Rocke. 

John Moffett. 

Powers & Weightman. 

S. S. Bunting. 

H. L. Wittkamp, M. D. 

Barker, Moore & Mein. 

C. H. Dwyer. 

Thos. A. Worley. 

J. T. Shinn. 
J. Lippman & Bro. 
C. Ellis' Son & Co. 
J. H. Shultz. 



FEBRUARY, 1876. 



[Abstract from an Inaugural Essay.) 

This name is applied by the natives of Mexico to a plant growing 
along the Rio Grande, the root of which they use as an astringent. 
The plant produces fleshy, fusiform roots, several of which grow 
together from a short head. They are nearly circular, one to two inches 
in diameter, and about two and one-half to three inches long. The 
corky bark is covered with a brownish, wrinkled layer, and is separated 
by a dark cambium line from the pithless internal substance, which is of 
a yellowish -brown or pinkish color. A transverse section of it shows 
one or sometimes two yellow concentric rings, and many dark resinous 
spots, arranged so as to form radiating lines. 

A quantity of fresh roots were procured in July, 1874, and several 
of them planted. In a short time they produced some leaves, which 
when full grown were petiolate, with a stipule at the base of the petiole, 
entire, twelve to thirteen inches long by two and one-half to three 
inches wide, oblanceolate, acute, smooth, shining, juicy and of light- 
green color. The plants have not flowered yet, and, as I was unable 
to procure any flowers from Mexico, it was impossible to classify the 
plant, but from its chemical composition and microscopic structure it 
might be inferred that it belongs to the natural order of Polygo- 

Treatment with Ether. — The powdered root was exhausted with 
ether, and the dark-red solution evaporated. Strong ether dissolved 
nearly all, water only a portion. The residue was of a yellow color, 
and had but little taste ; cold alcohol dissolved a portion of it, the resi- 
due consisting of wax, which was partially soluble in boiling alcohol. 
The solution in cold alcohol, when evaporated left moss-like crystal- 



Raiz del Indico, 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Feb. 1876. 

line groups, of an orange-colored principle, which by the following 
behavior was proven to be chrysophanlc acid : It was readily soluble in 
amylic alcohol, ether, benzol, glacial acetic acid and coal naphtha ; 
nearly insoluble in cold water ; sparingly in boiling water, imparting to 
it a reddish color ; soluble in sulphuric acid and reprecipitated on the 
addition of water % soluble in ammonia and the fixed alkalies, with a 
deep red color. The ammoniacal solution yielded with acetate of lead 
a lilac-colored and with subacetate of lead a yellow precipitate, the 
latter becoming carmine-red on the addition of water, and cinnabar-red 
when dried. The watery solution of the etherial extract was free 
from oxalic acid, but contained tannin, which was obtained as a brown- 
ish mass by precipitating with acetate of lead, exhausting the precipi- 
tate with acetic acid, neutralizing with ammonia, and decomposing the 
precipitate suspended in alcohol with sulphuretted hydrogen. It was 
precipitated by gelatin, black by ferric chloride, but did not yield pyro- 
gallic acid. 

Treatment with Alcohol. — The root, exhausted by ether, was treated 
with strong alcohol, the tincture concentrated and then treated with 
water, which produced a brownish precipitate, becoming black and 
glossy on drying. Strong alcohol dissolved it in part only, the remain- 
ing portion being black and friable, insoluble in water, very sparingly 
soluble in alcohol, ether, chloroform and benzol, burning upon platinum 
foil without melting, yielding with alkalies a brown color, and forming 
oxalic acid when treated with boiling nitric acid. This behavior proves 
it to be aporetin. 

The portion soluble in strong alcohol yielded with ether a yellow 
solution, and a brown, insoluble substance corresponding in behavior with 
phaoretin : when heated it melted and gave off yellow fumes ; it is with 
difficulty soluble in water, coloring it yellow, yields yellow solutions 
with alcohol and acetic acid, and red-brown solutions with alkalies ; its 
solution in sulphuric acid, when diluted with water, gives a yellow pre- 
cipitate, and its ammoniacal solution a violet-red precipitate with lead 

The yellow etherial solution yielded on evaporation erythroretin, 
which was found to be insoluble in cold water, to become soft and 
sparingly soluble in boiling water, to melt on being heated, and give off 
yellow fumes, to yield with sulphuric acid a brown solution which is pre- 
cipitated by water, to be soluble in alcohol, ether, acetic acid, and with a 
purple-red color in alkalies from which acids precipitate yellow flocks. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
Feb. 1876. i 

Factitious Balsam Tolu. 

The aqueous solution of the alcoholic extract was treated with 
acetate of lead. The precipitate contained tannin, but no oxalic acid, 
while in the filtrate glucose was proven by Trommer's test. 

Treatment with Water. — The root exhausted with ether and alcohol 
yielded to cold water some albumen, a trace of tannin, considerable 
gum, but no glucose. Boiling water subsequently took up much 

Treatment with Hydrochloric Acid. — The residuary powder from the 
above operations was treated with dilute hydrochloric acid, in which, 
by appropriate tests, the presence of oxalate of calcium and the absence 
of phosphoric acid was proven. 

The estimation of tannin was accomplished with a standard solution of 
gelatin, which indicated 23*16 per cent. 

The leaves of the plant were found to contain malic and oxalic acids 
in combination with lime. 



[Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting.) 

Having recently occasion to purchase some Balsam Tolu, a small 
quantity was ordered of a house well known for the high standard of 
drugs sent out by them; the article was received in lib jars, bearing the 
label of the house which had placed it in the same. 

The sample, upon examination, was found to be of a light brown 
color, with a pronounced odor of the drug, but in consistence rather 
softer than as usually met with in the market. 

Upon the addition of alcohol to a portion of the mass, it was dis- 
covered to be but partially soluble in that menstruum, the drug, upon 
being washed several times successively with warm alcohol and these 
washings filtered and evaporated, yielding but 26 per cent, of soluble 

To a portion of this residue oil of turpentine was added without 
any observable effect. 

To another portion water was added, and the mixture boiled ; with a 
like result. 

To another portion ether was added, the whole slightly warmed, the 
solution filtered and the residue washed upon the filter with ether, the 
filtrate, upon being evaporated, yielded 63 per cent, of " a balsam pre- 

52 The Importance of Garbling Drugs. { Am ^e°b ur 'i8 P 7 6 arm ' 

pared from the bark of Liquidambar Orientale" which, upon being 
treated with hot petroleum benzin, yielded a copious deposit of crys- 
tals of styracin upon cooling. The residue upon the filtrate was then 
examined, and found to consist almost entirely of bark and charred 
ligneous matter, amounting to nearly n per cent, of the drug. 

The high price of this article, at present, leads us to be careful in 
the selection of this drug, the sample under inspection costing $3.90 
per ft), and consisting in greater part, about 75 per cent., of charcoal 
and a drug costing less than a tenth of the price of Balsam Tolu. 

The moral it points is two-fold : First, that wholesale druggists 
should be careful in selecting drugs, which afterward go to the retail 
trade or manufacturers, with their label attached. Second, that the 
retailer must not rely implicitly upon any house offering drugs, but 
examine for himself such articles as may be offered from time to time, 
before they are allowed to go into the preparations of the Pharma- 
copoeia. Indeed, a wholesome system of drug garbling is sadly needed 
before such drugs as are to be found generally averaging the market, 
are fit for the dispensing counter. 

In the present instance, the extreme price only makes it more 
aggravating to the consumer, yet, doubtless, makes this particular 
article more tempting to the importer. 

Philadelphia, First month \%th, 1876. 



(Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, Jan. i$th, 1876.) 

Among the multitude of little things that, in the aggregate, form our 
profession, none, I believe, are so generally overlooked as that of the 
garbling of our drugs. That this is an important duty, I think anyone 
who doubts will find a convincing proof in going over his own stock of 
goods, and carefully separating the good from the bad, for no matter 
what precautions we may take in the selection of drugs, sophistications 
and impurities are bound to creep in. As a student, I have found this 
kind of employment particularly interesting and instructive, as it affords 
a means of becoming familiar with the appearance of drugs and their 
adulterants that could not be obtained by any number of observations 
of an isolated specimen. The impression among pharmacists often 
is, I am sorry to say, to feel that after having made purchases from 

Am F J e b u . r i876. arm ' } The Importance of Garbling Drugs. . 5 3 

none but reliable houses, that our whole duty has been discharged in 
the selection of material for our preparations and prescriptions ; but this 
precaution alone will not answer, for there is seemingly a constant ten- 
dency in drugs to become contaminated with foreign substances. 

Goat-skins and aloes have an almost inseparable friendship for each 

Rhubarb is sometimes associated with neatly-dusted stones, and 
though they grind hard, we make them up into extracts and powders, 
and dispense them under a printed guarantee of purity. Hydrastis and 
serpentaria experience a sort of endosmosis, and genuine tapioca takes 
out naturalization papers in New York city. 

Not long since, I examined a package of serpentaria (about 2 lbs.), 
which, to a casual observer, was of remarkably fine appearance, but on 
a more intimate acquaintance was found to contain not only serpen- 
taria, but also fruit of ground cherry, capsules of an unknown plant, 
stems and leaves of serpentaria, onion-husks, charcoal, snail-shells, bits 
of wood, glue, ginseng and gravel. I fear an infusion from such an 
article would scarcely be in accordance with the letter of the " Phar- 

In another instance, one pound of sarsaparilla root on being garbled, 
produced the following medley : nut-galls, matico stems, bay, bella- 
donna and digitalis leaves, paper, unknown bark, straw, ipecac and 
May-apple roots. Whether such a mixture would heighten the alter- 
ative effect of sarsaparilla is exceedingly questionable. How such an 
aggregation of substances so entirely different could take place, is not 
a question of difficult solution, when we consider how carelessly the 
covers of bins, barrels and boxes are adjusted in some of our whole- 
sale houses. 

A source of greater trouble than this, is in the fact that drugs are 
too often collected with seemingly but little regard to the medicinal 
portion thereof, as for instance, valerian and aconite roots are rarely 
found with less than 25 per cent, of stems attached, which, inasmuch 
as they contain no therapeutical virtue, are worse than useless. 

Pith of sassafras is occasionally accompanied with a goodly share of 
the woody structure ; in fact, one specimen which I possess is entirely 
composed of ligneous matter. Many of the leaves are collected with 
large quantities of stems and petioles, as in senna, buchu, digitalis, etc. 
Seeds are very generally found contaminated with stems and seed- 
vessels. Barks, especially our indigenous ones, are too frequently 


A New Ink. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Feb. 1876. 

found with their inner surface coated with wood and the outer one 
well protected by inert, dead corky matter. 

Our profession is, as a general thing, our source of financial income, 
and here, again, comes the importance of garbling drugs. You ask, 
What does Mrs. A. know about dirty and sophisticated drugs, when 
they are dispensed to her in a handsomely-prepared prescription ? I 
answer, Not anything ; but it is not alone from the mysterious liquids 
that trickle from our retorts, or the brilliant crystals that are born in 
our evaporating dishes, by which we are to be judged. There is, at 
the present day, and we may be proud of the fact, a spirit of rivalry 
among pharmacists as to who shall send out the most elegant prepara- 
tions ; but sparkling tinctures, inviting elixirs and palatial soda-fountains 
will not blind the eye of our censurious, invalid customer to the dirt 
existing in a package of gum arabic which has been purchased as a 
selected article. Cachets de pain and electro-plated dragees will not 
hide the sand, shells and star-fish that lurk in Irish moss any more 
than a bottle of palatable cod-liver oil will enhance the flavor of a 
porridge made from animated oat-meal. 



The French inkstand, sold under the name of Encrier Magique, 
also called perpetual inkstand, in its most approved form, consists of a 
shallow japanned metal tray, about five inches in diameter, on which 
is fastened a receptacle of a flattened globular form, about i\ inches 
in diameter and \\ inches high. On the top is an opening closed by a 
screw cap, and communicating with a cavity about the size of a large 
thimble. To use it, a little water is poured into this cavity and the 
ink is at once ready for use ; it is nearly jet black, with a slight purplish 
tinge, flows beautifully from the pen and is said not to be injured by 
freezing. When the ink is exhausted, or if it becomes too thick, it is 
renewed by adding a few drops of water. The excellent quality of 
this ink, and the extreme convenience of its preparation, make it very 
desirable ; but the inkstands are brought from Europe and are quite 
expensive, so that some more economical substitute seemed desirable. 
The rapidity of solution and the fluidity of the ink naturally suggested 
an anilin compound as the probable coloring agent. Acting upon this 
suggestion, some of the best anilin black (trade name, Nigrosine), was 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Feb. 1876. 

A New Ink. 


procured, and a solution made in the proportion of six grains to the 
ounce of water, this ratio seeming the most successful after several 
trials. Cold water dissolves it readily, the solution being ready for use 
in a minute or two. The resulting fluid resembles very closely that 
produced in the Encrier Magique, being, perhaps, a little less intense 
in color ; in their other properties the two seem to be identical. At 
the retail price of the black, the ink would cost about 25 or 30 cents 
a pint. It is bleached by chlorine, but is unaffected by nitric, hydro- 
chloric or sulphuric acids (the dilute acids of the U. S. P. were used 
in the trial), and is but slightly blurred by soaking in water. Con- 
trary to expectation, it is found to be unaffected by alcohol, which is 
said to remove the ordinary colored anilin inks from the paper readily 
and entirely. Writing, executed with this ink, has been soaked in 
alcohol four days without appreciable change. These somewhat unex- 
pected results encourage the hope that it may prove less liable to fade, 
by exposure, than other inks of a similar nature ; but further trials, 
during much longer time, will be necessary to determine this point. 
The only absolutely permanent inks yet made, aside from the use of 
acids to carbonize the paper, seem to be those made of lamp-black, or 
some other form of carbon, India ink being the type of the class. 
These are valuable for records that are to be kept for centuries, but 
are undesirable for common use, because they are more or less thick, 
do not flow readily and clog up the pen with insoluble matter. For 
ordinary purposes, this nigrosine ink can be recommended as combin- 
ing, perhaps, more advantages than any other yet tried. It is not 
expensive, is very conveniently made from portable materials, has a 
good deep color, flows beautifully, does not corrode steel pens and is 
not injured by freezing. Unless some unforeseen objection should be 
developed by further trial, it will win the favor of all who use it. 
The experience of the many who, like the writer, have been first 
delighted and afterwards disgusted with the logwood and chromate of 
potassium ink of Prof. Runge, warns us not to be too sanguine in 
our expectations, but this nigrosine is certainly well worth a trial. 
One word of caution, there are many things called anilin black, 
and many of them are worthless ; the kind recommended is called 

Elmira, N. V., December, 1875. 

Note by the Editor. — The ink recommended in the above 

56 New Process for Phosphorus Pills. { Am ^\l%™- 

paper appears to be the same as the one to which reference was made 
on page 88, of our last volume. 



Finding serious objections to all the processes brought forward for 
phosphorus pills, I was induced to search for a process which should be 
at once safe, easily managed, protecting the phosphorus from oxidation 
during the operation, and insure solubility of the pill when taken into 
the stomach. 

I present the following formula, which I think covers all these 
points, my opinion being based on the manufacture of many thousands 
of these pills during the last four or five months, with favorable re- 
ports from many pharmacists and physicians. 
Take of 

Syrup U. S. P., 260 parts. 

Wh eaten flour, . . . 340 parts. 

Phosphorus, . . .6 parts. 

Weigh the syrup in a stout, sound bottle of sufficient capacity to hold 
one-fourth more than the amount of syrup used. Place the bottle in 
a water- bath, and raise the temperature to 150 F. Drop the phos- 
phorus into the warm syrup, and, as soon as melted, close the bottle 
with a close-fitting cork ; take it from the bath, and, holding it up- 
right, give it a gently-whirling motion until the phosphorus is divided 
into small globules, when it must be violently shaken till cold. Having 
the flour finely sifted and placed in a mortar, pour in the mixture of 
syrup and phosphorus, and rapidly form the mass, which, when com- 
pleted, may be packed down in small, glazed earthen jars, and tin foil 
placed under the covers to retain the moisture and exclude the air. 

Pills made from this mass weighing 1 grain will contain grains 
phosphorus, and 2 grains -fa grain phosphorus. 

A portion of the flour in the above formula may be replaced with 
extract nux vomica, sacch. carb. iron, etc., if such combinations are 
to be made, of course observing to mix them in fine powder with the 
flour before adding the syrup. 

It is necessary, if small quantities are to be made, to return the bottle 
containing the phosphorus and syrup to the water-bath two or three 
times during the shaking, before finally allowing if to cool ; but with 
12 troy ounces or more of syrup it is unnecessary. 

%eb. ur i876. arm '} Formulas of so-called Elegant Preparations. 57 

The advantages of this process consist in the practically perfect sub 
division of the phosphorus at a low temperature, which insures safety 
with ordinary care, producing a mass easily worked, a pill rapidly dried 
and firm for coating, with so small an amount of oxidation throughout 
as to be insignificant. The pills, on being powdered in the dark, ex- 
hibit uniform luminosity, showing the thorough distribution of the 

Finally, let the operator who proposes to test this process for him- 
self, adhere to the directions I have endeavored to make plain, and I 
believe he will find, as I have, a simple way out of his phosphorus pill 

Indianapolis , Ind., January 14-th, 1876. 



It is evident to almost every careful observer that a large number of 
the above-mentioned preparations are not exactly what the manufac- 
turers would have the physicians and druggists to believe, though they 
may in a measure substitute those preparations which they are intended 
to represent. It is the opinion of the writer that it is nothing more 
nor less than a mere imposition to bestow upon preparations names 
which they are not justly entitled to. Would it not be of more in- 
terest to the physician, as well as to the pharmacist, to have these 
preparations fairly represented, and not displayed with circulars, etc., 
as if they were patent medicines which some manufacturers seem wont 
to do ? Below will be found a few formulas which are used to no 
little extent, viz : 

Syrup of the phosphates of iron, quinia and strychnia : 

Sulphate of iron (pure), . . . ^iv and grs. 16 

Sulphate of quinia, ... ^ii and grs. 8 

Strychnia, ..... grs. iv 

Phosphate of sodium, . . . J5viii and grs. 32 

Phosphoric acid (dilute), . . . ^viii 

Powdered sugar, .... 

Hydrochloric acid, . . . . ad q. s. 

Dissolve the sulphate of iron and phosphate of sodium each in 4 ozs. 
boiling water separately, pour together, collect the precipitate and 

58 Formulas of so-called Elegant Preparations. { Am -/e b r 'i? 7 h 6 arm ' 

wash ; dissolve the sulphate of quinia in the same quantity of cold 
water by the aid of hydrochloric acid, precipitate with ammonia water, 
collect and wash ; add the precipitates and the strychnia to the dilute 
phosphoric acid in a mortar, stirring, and dissolve any remaining pre- 
cipitate with hydrochloric acid, filter, then add sufficient powd. sugar 
to make one pint. 

Syrup of lacto-phosphate of lime : 

Phosphate of calcium, .... giv and 16 grs. 

Phosphoric acid (dil.) . . . ^vii 

Lactic acid (dil.), . . . . - 5 l 

Hydrochloric acid, .... 

Sugar, powdered, . . . . . ad q. s. 

Dissolve the calcium phosphate in 4 ozs. of water with hydrochloric 
acid, precipitate with ammonia water, collect and wash the precipitate 
and add it to the dilute lactic and phosphoric acids in a mortar ; tritur- 
ate, dissolve any remaining precipitate with hydrochloric acid, filter and 
add sufficient powdered sugar to make one pint. 

The wine of lacto-phosphate of lime may be made in the same way, 
by using sherry wine in place of the sugar. 

The amount of hydrochloric acid necessary to insure permanent 
solutions will amount to a little less than 6 drachms in the former and 
4 drachms in the latter, though one-half of this quantity would be 
sufficient to form a solution, but the preparations would scarcely keep 
longer than two or three months without precipitation, unless the whole 
quantity of acid be used. From this it will be seen that the amount 
of hydrochloric acid used will be sufficient, or nearly so, to convert all 
of the phosphates contained in these preparations into chlorides. 

Baltimore, January, 1876. 

Note by the Editor. — The formula given above for the syrup of 
the phosphates of iron, quinia and strychnia differs from Aitken's for- 
mula, published in u Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1867, p. 178, in containing a 
somewhat larger quantity of iron and less phosphoric acid. The pre- 
cipitate occurring in the syrup after some time is ferric phosphate (see 
"Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1867, p. 387), and may be prevented by using 
a stronger phosphoric acid, or, as suggested by the author, by the addi- 
tion of a sufficient amount of muriatic acid. 

For other formulas for syrup of lacto-phosphate of calcium, we would 
refer our readers to "Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1873, pp. 105, 221 and 234. 

Am Fe°b ur i8 P 7 6 arm '} Frcehdes Reagent a Test for Morphia. 59 



On page 21 (Jan. No.) of the present volume of this Journal, Mr. 
Wellcome brings to notice and refutes certain preposterous claims 
made, in St. Bartholomew's Hospital Reports of 1874, for a saturated 
solution of molybdic acid in sulphuric acid, as a test for morphia, 
namely : that this reagent distinguishes traces of that alkaloid, when it 
is directly applied to opium tinctures, lozenges and other mixtures. It 
certainly should not be taken as evidence of anything in particular, that 
there should be a lively play of colors, when a strong solution of molyb- 
dic acid in concentrated sulphuric acid, is brought upon aqueous, 
alcoholic or saccharine mixtures containing unclassified organic matter. 
As Mr. Wellcome well explains, a large number of deoxidizing agents 
reduce molybdic acid to blue compounds (molybdic molybdates). But 
the experiments which Mr. W. reports fail to sustain the extreme 
scepticism of his conclusion, that " there is no more need of molybdic 
acid or molybdates in these test solutions than for the presence of any 
other blue coloring matter, which will blend with the color produced 
by sulphuric acid, and produce tints which, while pleasing to the eye, 
confuse the analyst." 

In 1866, Froehde reported* the identification of morphia by the 
reagent which bears his name — a fresh solution of five milligrams of 
sodium molybdate in one cubic centimeter of pure concentrated sul- 
phuric acid (1 part to 368 parts) — a violet color being obtained. 

In 1868, Alm£n, f after investigation, stated that Froehde's test was 
much more certain and delicate than any of the old reactions for mor- 
phia, except that with iodic acid, and more characteristic than that by 
sulphuric with nitric acid (Erdmann's). 

Kauzmann, in 1869, found J that 0*05 of a milligram of morphia, 
if pure and solid, could be recognized by this test. Neubauer, in 1870, 
found § the test delicate and distinguishing for morphia in presence of 
strychnia. J. H. Buckingham, || in 1873, usm g a fresh solution of 8 

*"Archivder Pharm.," Bd. 126, p. 54; " Zeitschr. f. anal. Chemie," v, 214 
" Proc. Am. Phar. Asso.," xv, 241. 

f " Neues Jahrbuch f. Pharm.," Bd. 30, p. 87. " Zcitsch. f. anal. Chem., ,, j 
viii, 77. 

X "Zeitsch. f anal. Chemie," viii, 105. 
$ " Zeitsch. f. anal, Chemie," ix, 241. 

|| "Amer. Jour. Phar.," xlv, (1873) H9 5 " Polytechn. Notizblatt " (1874), 77 ; 
" Chem. Cent." (1873), 797 > "Jour. Chem. Soc." (1874), 715 ; "Zeitsch. an. Ch.," 
xiii, 234. 

60 Frcehdes Reagent a Test for Morphia. { Am - F J e ° b ur ;876 harm ' 

grains ammonium molybdate in 2 drachms sulphuric acid (i part to 15), 
extended the results, positive and negative, by this test to over twenty 
alkaloids and glucosides. And, about the same time, DragendorfF, 
using fresh solutions of 1 milligram sodium molybdate in one cub. 
cent, of concentrated sulphuric acid (1 part in 1840 parts),* obtained 
and reported results, positive and negative, with 50 alkaloids and glu- 
cosides. f 

For morphia, Dragendorff names Frcehde's test first. J In his very 
valuable " Untersuchungen," ii, 233, Hager gives a table of the re- 
actions which Dragendorff determined, using the 1 to 1840 molybdic 
solution. I know of no better authority in proximate analysis than 
the indefatigable Dorpat professor Dragendorff. His thorough research 
in the separation of alkaloids gives good assurance of the purity of those 
with which he experiments. For my own satisfaction, I have tried 
the larger number of the tests he reports with Froehde's reagent, and I 
have found his results verified with all that I have tried. 

It it very true that the reduction of molybdic acid produces blue pro- 
ducts of various shades (hydrated molybdic molybdates), and also by 
further reduction a brown product (molybdic hydrate) and that numer- 
ous reducing agents — inorganic and especially organic — effect these 
reductions. Indeed, a solution of molybdic acid in sulphuric acid is 
deoxidized to a blue precipitate by heat alone, at the temperature of 
incipient vaporization of the sulphuric, that being an approved test for 
molybdenum. § 

Now a large proportion of the most certain tests for organic com- 
pounds are made by application of oxidizing agents which serve to 
reveal the reducing power of these compounds : the degree and 
kind of the reducing power being within certain limits characteristic of 
each reducing agent tested for. Trommer's test for sugars, the " fad- 
ing purple" test for strychnia, and the " thalleioquin test" for quinia, 
are examples : the old tests for morphia by nitric and iodic acids, 
and probably that by ferric chloride, are of the same kind. In the 
greater number of these tests, chemists have not ascertained what are 

* For " o*oi grain," at middle of page 22 this vol. of this Journal, read " o-oi 

f " Beitrage zur gericht. Chemie einzelner organischer Gifte," St. Petersburg, 

X " Die chem. Werthbestimmung starkwirlcender Droguen," p. 81. 
§ Schonn : " Zeitsch. f. analyt. Chemie," viii, (1869), 379. 

Am Fe°b ur i8 P 7 6 arm: } Frcehdes Reagent a Test for Morphia. 61 

the organic products of the oxidation, and this has been the case with 
some so definite as to have a quantitative application (such as the use 
of the potassic cupric tartrate). No one of these tests is good for any- 
thing unless applied to carefully classified material. Thus, Froehde's 
reagent is directed to be applied to alkaloids, " absolutely free from 
impurities, not alkaloids." Salts of alkaloids with acids which, liberated 
by the sulphuric acid, will act as oxidizing, or reducing, or coloring 
agents, are, of course, unsuitable forms for the test. So it is not 
strange that Mr. Wellcome obtained the colors he names, with 
bromide, iodide, ferrocyanide and tannate, of quinia. 

The extreme dilution of the molybdic acid in DragendorfPs use of 
Froehde's reagent, shows the intensity of that elective reducing power 
possessed by some alkaloids, and renders this form of the reagent much 
more reliable than the form used by Buckingham (the strength first 
proposed by Froehde, being intermediate). Stannous chloride solution 
quickly colors ordinary molybdate solutions blue, but this and most 
other inorganic reducing agents fail to affect the solution when it is of 
the strength that DragendorfF uses. 

There yet remains to consider a statement in Mr. Wellcome's 
paper, concerning a point of much importance in the identification of 
morphia, a point having some practical relations generally overlooked. 
Referring to the table of reactions with Froehde's reagent given in 
" Outlines of Proximate Organic Analysis," and to the statement there 
that morphia with concentrated sulphuric acid alone is colorless, he reports 
that "it gives a wine-red color." If the latter statement is correct, it 
certainly greatly weakens the evidence of the violet color obtained 
when the trace of molybdate is present. And, if my reader leaves this 
discussion to try the test for himself, with the first materials at his 
hand, he may, probably, find in a few minutes the result (even in the 
cold) which Mr. Wellcome found. If so, and he is sure that his 
sulphuric acid is absolutely pure, and his morphia or its sulphate pure, 
so much the worse for Froehde's reagent and its authorities ; while, if 
he is not sure of the absolute purity of his materials, the result suggests 
caution in use of the test, and inquiry as to impurities and their influence. 

The authorities are nearly uniform in the statement that morphia is 
not colored by concentrated sulphuric acid (in the cold and without 

62 Frcehdes Reagent a Test for Morphia. { Am '^ r \^ 6 arm ' 

standing). In the hand-books, Fresenius,* Otto,f Wormley,J Heppe,§ 
and others, agree in this, — Wittstein, on the other hand, giving as 
result a yellowish coloration. || Hager^[ and Heppe, (as just quoted) — 
both as compilers — state that, by heating the sulphuric acid solution to 
100° to 150 C, a "faint violet-red" or " red " color is obtained. 

A trace of nitric with sulphuric acid greatly effects its reaction with 
morphia, — a mixture of the two acids furnishing a much more delicate 
test for that alkaloid than nitric acid alone. In 1861, Erdmann, dur- 
ing some fruitful researches in the identification of alkaloids** fixed 
upon a mixture containing little more than one hundredth of one per 
cent, of nitric acid of spec. grav. 1*25, ft referred to as Erdmann's re- 
agent giving with morphia a violet color. Now how minute a trace of 
nitric acid will enable sulphuric acid to color notable quantities of 
morphia reddish, I do not know. As to the purity of the " chemically 
pure " sulphuric acid of the market, most analysts find occasionally lots 
which reveal nitric acid, even by the ferrous sulphate test, and, still 
more often, the brucia test or the anilin sulphate test shows the im- 
purity, jj Query : how does the delicacy of a morphia test for nitric 

" Qual. Chem. Anal.," Johnson's Edition from 14th German, (1875), p. 392. 
t " Detection of Poisons," New York, 1862, p. 146. 
% " Micro-Chemistry of Poisons," (1869), " Tabular View." 
>/. "Die Chemischen Reactionen," Leipzig, 1875, P« 2 4^- 
|| "Analyse v. Pflanzen u. Pflanzentheilen," 1868, p 156. 
\ " Untersuchungen," ii, 161. 

** " Annal d. Chemie u. Pharm.," Bd. 120, p. 188. " Zeitsch. f. analyt. Chemie," 
i, 224, — (Neubauer's Report). 

ff Six drops of nitric acid of sp. gr. 1*25 are mixed with 100 c. c. water, and ten 
drops of this mixture are mixed with 20 grams concentrated sulphuric acid. Ot 
this reagent, 8 to 20 drops are added to 1 or 2 milligrams of the solid to be tested, 
and after \ to \ hour the color is noted. The heat developed by a drop or two of 
water increases the delicacy of the reaction — a violet color. Erdmann reported 
color tests by this reagent with four other alkaloids, viz. : narcotina, strychnia, 
brucia and veratria. 

Shortly after the introduction of Erdmann's reagent, Husemann (" Annal. d. 
Chem. u. Pharm.," Bd. 128, p. 303) ascertained, that if the sulphuric acid solution 
of morphia (colorless, he states, in the cold) be heated above ioo° C. but not as high 
as 150 C, and then treated with a few drops of nitric acid of sp. gr. 1*2, a dark 
violet color will give evidence of morphia, the test being more delicate than Erd- 
mann's, revealing 0*00001 gram alkaloid. This test of Husemann is given in the 
recent manuals of Fresenius, Hager and Heppe. 

% % Bedford : " Proc. Am. Phar. Asso.," 1874, 429. Dickinson: (Contribu- 
tions Chem. Lab. Univ. Mich.) "Am. Chemist," 1875, Aug., p. 43. 

Am -Fe°b ur ;8^6 arm '} Frcehdes Reagent a Test for Morphia. 63 

acid in sulphuric acid compare with the delicacy of tests in use for 
that purpose ? 

I have not made any investigations toward the answer of this 
query, and therefore am not prepared to report as to the effect of 
absolutely pure sulphuric acid upon morphia. I have found that the 
best obtainable sulphuric acid of the chemical market, with the purest 
morphia easily obtained (purified, as presently to explain), give in the 
cold but a barely perceptible shade of dull reddish color, — the tint being 
too faint to clearly define. But all of these samples (taken dry, of 
course), when heated on the water-bath, promptly turn perceptibly violet 
or purple — and after standing, become brown. With some samples of 
sulphuric acid the shade is some lighter than it is with others, but the 
color of the faintest shades obtained can be defined well enough. 

On the other hand, some of the samples of morphia which I have 
tried give (after the heating) a little different color from others, vary- 
ing from light violet (or rose) toward the purple, though the shade is of 
nearly the same depth with all the morphia samples. But the samples 
of morphia sulphate as found in the market, gave a little more color 
with the sulphuric acid in the cold than is reported above. Before 
those results were obtained, the samples of sulphate were dissolved in a 
little water, the solution washed in a test tube, once, with the best 
chloroform, and the water solution evaporated to dryness, when the 
cold residue was tested. I have not investigated the chloroform 
extract : to do which doubtless larger quantities should be used. 
Several laboratory preparations of the base morphia, and a P. & 
sample of " morphia, pure," taken without purification, gave with 
sulphuric acid in the cold the nearly negative result above stated. It 
will be recollected that a number of the opium alkaloids are reported to 
give bright colors with sulphuric acid. Papaverina is colored deep 
violet, according to Merck ; only after heating, according to Hesse*. 
Narcotina, according to Dragendorff, is colored yellow after a few 
moments' contact, later turning reddish yellow ; according to Huse- 
mann, after warming, purple. Thebaina, (Dragendorff, Hager's Unter- 
such.) gives a blood-red color ; (according to Couerbe, a blood-red 
color when the sulphuric acid contains a trace of nitric). Narceina 
was given in my Prox. Org. Anl. as presenting with sulphuric acid a 
brown to yellow color, after Dragendorff and Wormley ; in Hager's 
Untersuchungen, p. 172, the statement is given that the deep-red 
* " Heppe's Chemische Reactionen, p. 267. 

64 Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. { Am ' F J e°b ur i8^6. arm ' 

color, to blue color, usually obtained, is due to impurity. Cryptopia 
gives a blue color. Now from water solution of sulphates, chloroform 
dissolves and extracts papaverina, narcotina and thebaina, (narceina ?), — 
leaving the morphia in the water solution. 

In connection with the inquiry as to the effect of concentrated 
sulphuric acid upon morphia, it is interesting to note the remarkable 
power which cane sugar has, as a third body, in this reaction. 
Schneider's test* gives a purple-violet color of such intensity that it is 
not exceeded in delicacy by any other test, (others being probably more 
characteristic). As to the organic products of these reactions, having 
stated that chemists were generally unacquainted with the products of 
oxidation of organic compounds as they occur in the " color tests," I 
ought to refer to at least one research upon morphia, doubtless in the 
direction of the light desired. C. R. A. Wright has not labored so 
patiently among the alkaloids, in the service of synthesis, without some 
benefit to analysis, as well. Thus, he gives the formula (not fully 
confirmed) of the blood red liquid formed by action of nitric acid and 
silver nitrate upon morphia, as C 2i H 20 N 3 O 13 .t 

University of Michigan^ January \ 1876. 



Examination of Olive Oil. — E. Kopp calls attention again to the 
following simple method, which depends upon the conversion of the 
oil into solid elaidin by means of nitrous acid. Ten volumes of the 
oil and one volume of ordinary nitric acid are poured into a test-glass, 
and a few pieces of copper wire are added, whereby nitric oxide is 
evolved, which, with the nitric acid, yields nitrous acid. As soon as 
the gas bubbles passing through the oil become numerous, the acid and 
oil are intimately mixed by stirring with a glass rod. After about five 
minutes, the mixture is again made by continuous stirring, and then set 
aside in a cool place of 12 to 15 C. (54 to 59 F.) The oil sepa- 
rates again from the acid, with a blue color from the presence of cop- 
per nitrate, but soon begins to congeal, the more rapid in proportion 
to the purity of the olive oil, the elaidin being not only solid, but like- 

* "Am. Journ. Phar.," xlv, (1873), 545 5 xl vi, (1874), 558. " Zeitsch. f. analyt. 
Chemie," xii, (1873), 2l8 - 

f "Jour. Chem. Soc," 1873, p. 1088. 

Am ' ja n. r i8 P 7 6. arm ' } Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. 65 

wise quite white. If mixtures with other oils are thus tested, solidifi- 
cation will take place much slower, and the elaidin will be usually soft, 
and of a more or less yellowish or brownish color. — Chem. Centralbl., 
1875, No. 47, from Musterzeitung. 

Removal of Silver Stains from Clothes. — The following method is 
particularly successful with clothes that had been previously washed. 
The soiled piece is for a few minutes immersed in a concentrated solu- 
tion of chloride of copper, and the stain is then rubbed with a crystal 
of sodium hyposulphite, previously dipped into ammonia which has been 
diluted with an equal bulk of water. If the copper chloride has been 
quite neutral, the color of the fabric will not be affected. This process 
may, if necessary, be repeated several times. — Ibid., No. 48, from Phot. 

Quercitrin and Quercetin. — Jul. Loewe has experimented with quer- 
citrin prepared by himself from quercitron bark, and found it not to be 
a glucoside, as usually assumed. He found the formula of quercitrin 
dried over sulphuric acid to be C 15 H 16 9 ; when fused at 130 C. 
(266 F.), it was C 15 H 14 O s ; the yellow lead compound had the formula 
C 15 H 14 O s PbO ; the orange-colored lead compound, the formula 
C 15 H 12 7 2PbO, and the formula of quercetin was found to be C 15 H 12 O r 
The latter is therefore quercitrin from which the elements of water have 
been removed, and robinin and rutinin are probably quercitrin combined 
with water ; the analyses of the last-named compound, by various 
authors, agree well with the formula C 15 H 18 O 10 . — Zeitschr. f. Analyt. 
Chem., 1875, 233-241. 

To Detect Free Hydrochloric Acid in the Presence of a Chloride. — J. Lb- 
wenthal boils the liquid with peroxide of lead, which becomes lighter in 
color, chlorine being liberated, and the reaction completed in five 
minutes. Peroxide of lead does not act upon the chlorides having the 
formula MCI, nor upon pure aluminic chloride ; but ferric chloride is 
strongly acted upon and stannic chloride is completely decomposed by 
boiling with lead peroxide. — Ibid., p. 306. 

Detection of Resin in Wax. — Recently several apothecaries and drug- 
gists of Berlin were cheated with beeswax which had been adulterated 
with 20 per cent, of resin. The specific gravity of pure wax being 
between -960 and '963, it will float in officinal ammonia water (spec, 
gr. -960,) while a sample adulterated with resin will sink in the same 

66 Gleanings from the Foreign Journals, \ Am 'Y°^ r \^ rm ' 

liquid, the resin having a higher specific gravity. — Phar, Zeitung, 1875, 
No. 102. 

Salicylate of ammonium is recommended by^ Martenson for internal 
use. It is readily prepared by neutralizing salicylic acid diffused in 
water, with ammonia or carbonate of ammonium, whereby a solution 
of any desirable strength may be obtained. Evaporated upon a water- 
bath, some ammonia escapes, and the liquid becomes acid ; if suffi- 
ciently concentrated, and, if necessary, again neutralized, the salt will 
crystallize, on cooling, in shining needles, which are readily soluble in 
water and alcohol. The aqueous solution keeps unaltered for a long 
time, has a sweetish, insipid taste, and, when mixed with mineral or 
organic acids, deposits salicylic acid. The salt is given dissolved in 
aromatized water, or in the form of syrup ; combination with fruit- 
syrups must be avoided. — Ibid. 

Detection of Carbolic Acid in Oil of Cloves. — Jacquemin recommends 
to add to the oil the fraction of a drop of anilin, and then to shake it 
with 5 to 6 times its quantity of water, to which subsequently a few 
drops of chlorinated soda solution are added. Pure oil of cloves will 
produce a purplish-violet color, which gradually becomes fainter ; in 
the presence of carbolic acid a bright-blue coloration is produced in a 
few minutes, if agitation is avoided after the last addition. One per 
cent, of phenol may thus be detected in one drop of the oil. — Ibid., 
from four, de Phar. et de Chim. 

Preparation of E?nulsions of Gum Resins. — The difficulty of preparing 
emulsions of ammoniac and other gum resins during the summer time, 
is overcome, according to E. Gasser, by manipulating as follows : 2 or 

4 grams of ammoniac are triturated in a mortar as well as possible ; 
then 2 grams of water are added, and afterwards 2 grams of alcohol. 
The latter is ignited, and when the flame is extinguished 2 grams of 
powdered gum arabic are added to the warm mixture, and the whole 
rapidly agitated, after which the emulsion is finished by the gradual 
addition of the excipient. The above is a modification of the process 
proposed by Oppermann in his " Cours de Pharmacies — Ibid., No. 
103, from four, de Phar. d? Als.-Lorr. 

Glycerol of Tar. — Ch. Peyronnet obtains a perfectly homogeneous 
preparation, of the consistence of an ointment, by operating as follows : 

5 grams of starch are well mixed with the same quantity of water j 

Am ' fe r -x8 7 6! rm -} Pharmacy of Salicylic Acid. 67 

30 grams of glycerin are added, and the mixture is heated, with con- 
stant agitation, until it has acquired the proper consistence, when 10 
grams of purified tar are added and well mixed. — D Union Pharm., 
l $75, p. 3 2 4- 

Cauterizing Pencils of Sulphate of Copper. — Schoull reduces the crys- 
tals of copper sulphate to a coarse powder, which is heated in a porce- 
lain capsule to about 150 C. (302 F.). When it has lost nearly all 
its water of crystallization, the heat is discontinued and the mass 
allowed to cool somewhat ; it is powdered finely and the water again 
added in small quantities, and well incorporated with the aid of a pestle. 
On combining again with its water of crystallization, the salt becomes 
hot, and finally acquires a pilular consistence, when it is rolled out into 
cylinders of suitable thickness, which gradually become quite hard. 
Should the water have been added somewhat in excess, the addition of 
a little finely powdered effloresced copper sulphate will impart the 
necessary consistence. — Ibid., p. 326. (See, also, Amer. four. Phar., 
I ^7S-> P- 267 and 504.) 

Collodion for Freckles [Collodion antephtlique). — In place of mercuric 
chloride and cyanide, which are usually recommended for the removal 
of freckles, the " Phar. Zeitschr. f. Russl." recommends the following 
preparation, as being effectual without possessing the dangers of the 
former : One gram of sulphocarbolate of zinc is reduced to a very 
fine powder, and then incorporated by trituration with one gram of 
essence of lemon (or other flavor) ; 5 grams alcohol and 45 grams of 
collodion. — Ibid. 



The author, who is a pharmacien residing at Lyons, has made a 
compilation of different formulae for the administration of salicylic 
acid, which he read before the Pharmaceutical Association of that city 
at its October meeting. The paper is published in the " Repertoire de 
Pharmacie" (Oct. 25, p. 609), and we are indebted to it for the fol- 
lowing extracts : 

External use. — Dr. Wagner recommends that a thin layer of finely 
powdered salicylic acid should be spread upon calico and applied by 
means of a bandage to wounds. 


Pharmacy of Salicylic Acid. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Feb. 1876. 

Pommade. — Dr. Wagner gives the following formula : 

Salicylic Acid . . . . . 15 parts. 

Alcohol . . . . . . 30 " 

Lard . . . . . $ • • 150 " * 

It is important to use the alcohol as a solvent, the direct mixture of 
the acid with the lard does not give the same good effects. 

Dentifrices. — M. Paulcke, a pharmacien at Leipzig, prepares as a 
dentifrice a powder in which salicylic acid is incorporated ; also an 
u elixir dentifrice" from a solution of the acid aromatized with oil of 

Foot Powder. — It is stated that salicylic acid removes the odor of 
sweat from feet, without preventing the sweating, its action being to 
prevent the formation of butyric, valerianic and other acids of the same 
family, which injure the feet. M. Paulcke therefore prepared with 
salicylic acid, soap, talc and starch, a powder for the feet, which, whilst 
rendering them firm, is said to induce an agreeable softness and to re- 
move all unpleasant smell. 

Mixture. — The following formula is attributed to Professor Wunder- 

lich: - • 

Salicylic Acid ...... 1 gram. 

Oil of Sweet Almonds . . . . 20 " 

Gum Arabic . . . . . . 10 " 

Syrup of Almonds . . . . 25 " 

Orange Flower Water . . . . . 45 " 

A teaspoonful to be taken every hour when children are sufficiently 

old to use a gargle. Dr. Fontheim says it may be so administered 

every hour. 

Solution in Glycerin and Water. — M. Muller, a pharmacist at Breslau, 
gives the following : 

Salicylic Acid ...... 1 gram. 

Glycerin . . . . . . 20 " 

Distilled Water . . . . . 80 « 

First treat the acid with the glycerin, and then add the water. 
In Switzerland, salicylic acid has been used in typhoid and paludian 
fevers, etc. It has been noticed that it has a very remarkable cumula- 
tive action ; for, after having obtained the desired remission by a first 
dose of 4 to 8 grams, it has been found that a dose of one-half, or one- 
fourth that quantity on the following days is sufficient to keep the 
temperature within good limits. Dr. De Cerenville recommends that 
these doses should be administered in water, flavored with liquorice 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Feb. 1876. 

Pill Coating. 


The following formulae are due to M. Maury. 

Antiseptic Mouth Paste. 
Rectified Salicylic Acid ..... 2 grams. 

Honey . . . . . . 34 " 

Compound Powder for Extemporaneous Antiseptic Mouth Paste. 
Rectified Salicylic Acid .... 2 grams. 

Powdered Sugar, or some other inert powder . 20 " 

Mix. To be applied to the sore parts of the mouth by means of a 
brush previously moistened with water. 

Lozenges. — Salicylic acid, with sufficient gum and sugar for each 
lozenge to contain 25 milligrams of the acid. 

• Salicylic Syrup. — Pure salicylic acid, with sufficient syrup of orange 
flowers for 20 grams to contain 5 centigrams of the acid. 


Pure Salicylic Acid .... 1*50 grams. 

Powdered Gum Arabic .... io-oo " 

Sugar . . - . . . . icoo " 

Orange Flower Water .... 20*00 " 
Distilled Water . . . . 100*00 " 
F. s. a. — Shake the bottle before each dose. A teaspoonful every 
two hours for children. 

Salicylic Wine. 

Pure Salicylic Acid ..... 2 grams 

Muscat Wine ...... 100 " F. s. a. 

Wine of Cinchona and Salicylate of ~>uinia. 

Calisaya Bark . . . . . 30 grams. 

Salicylate of Quinia . . . . . 1 " 

Madeira Wine . . . . . 1000 " F. s. a 

Injection. — A solution of 1 part of salicylic acid in 300 parts of water 
has been used as an injection in fluor albus. — The Pharm. Journ. and 
Tram., November 13, 1875. 



We all dislike the modern method of keeping a full line of ready- 
made pills on hand, comprising from 200 to 250 different formulae ; 
not only this, but we must be able to dispense pills of A, B and C's 
manufacture, according to the notions of the physician, necessitating 
the carrying of an immense stock, some of which remains on our shelves 
a long time before being called for a second time. Apparently, the 


Pill Coating. 

f ^m. Jour. Pharm 
1 Feb. 1876. 

only way of avoiding and abating this nuisance, is to be able to coat 
the pills ourselves, and do it as nicely as the manufacturers. 

Having tried a great many experiments in coating pills with sugar 
and French chalk, my experience may be of interest and benefit to the 
readers of " The Pharmacist." 

In coating with sugar, I find it advantageous, though not necessary, 
to coat the pills first with a resinous substance ; for this purpose I 
prefer mastic, as it is not sticky when drying. Pills, when thus pro- 
tected, may be washed if necessary, to remove a subsequent coating 
not successfully applied. 

To apply this resinous coat, take a patch box, or earthen jar of con- 
venient size, moisten the inside of box and cover with glycerin, in- 
troduce the pills, and for every hundred of pills add ten drops of a 
saturated solution of mastic in ether, adjust the cover, and rotate very 
rapidly for a few moments, then scatter the pills thinly over a plate of 
glass that has been previously rubbed with glycerin ; when dry, if not 
thoroughly coated, return to the box and proceed as before ; if satis- 
factory, moisten with mucilage of gum arabic — 1 part gum to 5 of 
water — care being taken not to use too much mucilage, yet the pills 
must be thoroughly moistened ; this can be quickly done by placing the 
pills in the box used for coating, dropping the mucilage upon them, and 
rolling them around till moistened ; then transfer to another jar or 
box containing dusted sugar (known as confectioners' sugar), here the 
pills are rolled around with the fingers, using a gentle pressure ; when 
covered, roll them around in a fine sieve to remove the superfluous 
sugar, then transfer to a clean damp box or jar, rotate rapidly, avoiding 
a throwing motion ; if the coating does not become smooth, again 
dampen the box or jar, and rotate as before, observing not to let the 
coating become dry till smooth. It will probably take some practice 
to be able to obtain an even, white coating. 

French chalk, as a coating, was suggested fully fifteen years ago. 
In the "Am. Journ. Pharm.," 1874, Mr. Cope calls attention to it 
again, and gives very simple instructions for its application, as follows : 

" Moisten the pills with mucilage and transfer to a gallipot contain- 
ing the powdered chalk ; when thoroughly coated, turn into a pill-tray 
and let them remain a short time ; they are then put into another galli- 
pot to polish and shake off the loose powder." 

For coating pills extemporaneously, I generally make them very 
moist with mucilage, so that they will absorb a thick coat of chalk j 

Am, Feb r i8 P 7 6 arm "} Extemporaneous Coating of Pills. 71 

when well covered they are gently rotated in a clean 4 ounce patch 
box. As the quantity of mucilage used was sufficient to keep this 
coating quite soft and moist, a quantity of dusted sugar is added, and 
the agitation continued. This gives a sugar-coated pill, very white 
and smooth, and is easily done. 

In coating pills with French chalk, in order to have a good coating, 
care should be used in selecting the chalk ; only fine, white pieces 
should be taken. These can be readily powdered by rubbing on fine 
sand-paper tacked to a smooth board. It should be sifted through a 
very fine sieve. The commercial powder is dark-colored and gritty, 
thus rendered unfit for coating. 

In making and coating our own pills, there is not only the satisfac- 
tion of knowing that they are correctly made and contain what the 
label calls for, but the difference in cost will amply repay one for the 
time he may spend upon them. Thus, pills of iodoform and iron, of 
1 grain, quoted at one dollar per hundred, net, can be made for thirty- 
five cents ; compound pills of quinia, quoted at ninety-three cents per 
hundred, can be made for sixty cents ; 5 grain blue mass pills, quoted 
at twenty-five cents, can be made for eight cents, etc. This difference 
in cost alone ought to induce dispensing pharmacists to prepare their 
own pills, then the wholesale pill makers might go on making their 
elongated, compressed or any other pill that pleases them. — The Phar- 
macist, January, 1876. 



Why can pills, as they are made in the retail prescription department, not 
be coated there also with sugar, gelatin or some such-like suhstance ? 

They can easily be coated with gelatin, according to the directions 
given in the old edition of " Griffith's Formulary," (also third edition, 
p. 643), or in " Wood and Bache's U. S. Dispensatory," 12th or 13th 
edition, with a little expeience of the pharmaceutist. 

Pills can also be coated in the retail prescription department with 

The success in coating pills rests chiefly with the first process in 
mixing the mass. The state of dryness of the pills has the most influ- 
ence on the operation of coating with sugar as well as with gelatin, and 
pills can be thoroughly dried only if they have been prepared with the 

j 2 Extemporaneous Coating of Pills. { Am ^ e b ur i^6. ara ' 

proper excipients. Here we come to the most important part in making 
pills, the excipients used. The success of the "manufacturer" of 
pills is mainly due to the employment of the proper excipients, enabling 
him to dry the pills thoroughly. 

A pill may be soft and yet be not as soluble as a hard pill. If we 
have gum-resins or resinous extracts, and add a little spirit we will pro- 
duce a pill of softness and plasticity, but when we take such a pill 
between our fingers and try to mix it with water, we will find that it 
may adhere to the skin, and cannot be well washed off without using 
alcohol or some other solvent of resin. On the other hand, if we take 
compound cathartic pills, prepared strictly as the " United States Phar- 
macopoeia " directs, by using the different substances in the form of 
powders, and having beaten them into mass with water, we shall have 
a pill which will fall into powder again when put into water. The 
excipient should be such as will not combine much with the resinous or 
other ingredients, but form rather a layer between the powders employed. 
A layer of soluble substances between powders less soluble in water 
(such as gum-resins or resinous extracts), will produce a pill that can 
be dried to become perfectly hard, and yet that will fall into powder 
when put into water, the water washing out the layer. Soft pills are 
apt to lose shape \ and pills containing moisture cannot be kept in well- 
closed bottles, lest they become mouldy. 

The success in making pills is based on the excipient used. 

Pills which have been thoroughly dried can be coated with sugar, as 
follows: Boil 32 ounces of best white sugar, with 12J ounces of 
distilled water, to a syrup, and use enough of this syrup (temp. 120 to 
150 ) to moisten the pills, in a small copper kettle or pan, exposing it 
to a heat sufficient to dry the pills while kept in motion and worked 
with the hand. After this first coat is dry, the operation is repeated 
until the pill is covered with sugar sufficiently. A very soluble coating 
for pills is the following composition : 1 ounce of flaxseed, \ ounce of 
Irish moss ; boil with 8 fluidounces of water, strain, add 4 ounces of 
sugar, boil and use in the same manner as a solution of gelatin is used 
for coating pills. 

If pills in very small quantities are to be made and coated with 
sugar or gelatin, in a retail prescription department, the mass should be 
made as hard as it possibly can be made, and allow cutting ; after being 
cut it should be exposed to a draft of dry air so long as time will allow. 
Thus pills can be made and coated in small quantities within an hour 
or less time. — Druggists' Circular, January, 1876. 

Am F J e b ur 'J 7 h 6? rm '} Determination of Mixed Oils. 73 


The testing of mixed oils is far from being a certain operation. The 
following, however, are the principal means of determining the pres- 
ence of mixtures : 

ist. The determination 

of its specific g 

ravity at 15 

C. and its 

parison, with the following 

table : 

Density. Degrees 

011 alcoholometer. 

Weight of 1 h< 

Tallow oil (olein) 




Colza (winter strained) 




Colza (summer strained) 


\y j 


J 7 


Rape-seed (winter strained) 

QI f '1 

CO* C 

J y J 

y j t 

Rape-seed (summer strained) 

91 5*7 



Groundnut (Arachis oil) 


5 8*5 




5 8'5 











9 2 3"5 

56 O 

9 2 '35 



55 -0 





9 2 *53 
















•93 - 5o 

2d. Chlorine turns animal oils brown and vegetable oils white. The 
former are soluble, and the latter insoluble in ether. 

3d. To discover an adulteration by oil of sesame, shake five grams 
of sulphuric acid with five grams of nitric, and ten grams of the 
suspected oil ; if mixed, a grass-green color is immediately developed. 

4th. To find if olive oil is mixed with any unknown oil, mix fifty 
centimetres of the oil with ten centimetres of sulphuric acid. If the 
olive oil is pure, there will be a rise of 42 ; if mixed, the temperature 
will be 58 for oil of colza, 65 for beechnut, 68° for sesame, 98 for 
hemp-seed, 13 for linseed. 

5th. The production of a black hue in the lower part of the test- 
tube, after agitating twenty drops of an alcoholic solution of nitrate of 
silver with ten grams of oil and twenty grams of ether, the flask being 
kept in the dark, shows the presence of rape-seed oil. 

6th. The most difficult adulteration to be detected is that of olive 
and groundnut oil. These oils have the same density, congeal at the 
same temperature, and are acted on by sulphuric acid in a similar man- 
ner. They can, however, be distinguished as follows : 

74 Growth and Uses of Benzoin. { A %fc P 7 £ arm * 

Dissolve, cold, twelve grams of mercury in fifteen grams of nitric 
acid of 38 . Mix this with ninety grams of the suspected oil, and 
agitate often during two hours. If the olive oil is pure, the mixture 
will become homogeneous ; if not, and especially if the mixture be- 
comes filled with carboniferous streaks, the presence of the groundnut 
oil may be reported. — Moniteur des Produits Ghimiques, from four. Ap. 
Science, 1875, December. 


The benzoin, or frankincense, in commercial parlance called " Ben- 
jamin," is a more common article of commerce than camphor. Al- 
though in general request for the ceremonies of the Romish, Ma- 
homedan, Hindu and Chinese worship, there is no evidence that the 
Greeks or Romans, or even the early Arabian physicians, had any 
acquaintance with benzoin ; nor is the drug to be recognized among 
the commodities which were conveyed to China by the Arab and 
Persian traders between the tenth and thirteenth centuries, although 
the camphor of Sumatra is expressly named. The first mention of 
benzoin occurs in the " Travels of Ibn Batuta," who, having visited 
Sumatra during his journey through the East, A.D. 1325-49, notes 
that the island produces Java Frankincense and camphor. There is 
no further information about the drug until the latter half of the fol- 
lowing century, when it is recorded that in 146 1 the Sultan of Egypt 
sent to Pasquale Malipiero, Doge of Venice, amongst other articles, a 
present of 30 rotoli of Benzoi. Agostino Barberigo, another Doge of 
Venice, was presented in similar manner, by the Sultan of Egypt, with 
35 rotoli of aloes wood, the same quantity of benzin, and 100 loaves of 
sugar. The occurrence of benzoin in Siam is noted in the journal of 
the voyage of Vasco de Gama, and the Portuguese traveler Barbosa, 
who visited Calicut, on the Malabar coast, in 151 1, mentions benzin 
among the more valuable items of export. In the early part of the 
seventeenth century there was direct commercial intercourse between 
England and both Siam and Sumatra. An English factory existed at 
Siam until 1623, and benzoin was doubtless one of the commodities 

The tree which produces this so-called gum does not attain to any 
considerable size. It is an inhabitant of the hot plains, and nourishes 
best in the rich, moist lands fitted for the cultivation of marsh rice. 

Am. Tour. Pharm. 
Feb. 1876. 

Growth and Uses of Benzoin. 


The plants are propagated from a seed, which resembles a small, brown 
nut, and but little care is required except to keep the shrubs clear from 
weeds. Before the sixth or seventh year the gum is obtained by mak- 
ing incisions in the bark, when the substance exudes, and is scraped off 
in like manner as the opium poppy. The first juice is the purest and 
most fragrant, and hardens on exposure to the air, when it becomes 
brittle and transparent. The resin is white and transparent, and about 
three pounds are given by each tree. The white Benjamin is termed 
cowrie luban in India, and is a superior kind. Afterwards a browner 
description is extracted, and finally, when the tree has become ex- 
hausted and has been cut down, an inferior kind is obtained from the 
scraping of the wood. The three different varieties ascordingly bear 
relative values in commerce. The resin which exudes during the first 
three years is said to be fuller of white tears, and therefore of finer 
quality than that which issues subsequently, and it is termed by the 
Malays Head benzoin. That which flows during the next 7 or 8 years 
is browner in color and less valuable, and is known as Belly benzoin ; 
while the third sort, obtaided by splitting the tree and scraping the 
wood, is called Foot ; this last is mixed much with bark and refuse. 
Benzoin is brought for sale to the ports of Sumatra in large cakes, 
called Tampangs, wrapped in matting. These have to be broken, and 
softened either by the heat of the sun or by that of boiling water, and 
then packed into square cases, which the resin is made to fill. A 
variety of the Sumatra benzoin is distinguished by the London drug- 
gists as Penang Benjamin, or Storax-smelling Benjamin. The quality is 
very fine, full of white tears, some of them two inches long, the inter- 
vening resin being greyish. The odor is very agreeable and perceptibly 
different from the Siam, or the usual Sumatra sort. 

The only account of the collection of Siam benzoin is that given by 
Sir R. N. Schomburgk, for some years British Consul at Bangkok. 
He represents that the bark is gashed all over, and that the resin which 
exudes collects and hardens between it and the wood, the former of 
which is then stripped off. This account is confirmed by the aspect 
ot some of the Siam benzoin of commerce, as well as by that of pieces 
ot bark ; but it is also evident that all the Siam drug is not thus ob- 
tained. Schomburgk adds that the resin is much injured and broken 
during its conveyance in small baskets on bullocks' backs to the navi- 
gable parts of the Lenam, whence it is brought down to Bangkok. 
The most esteemed sort is that which consists entirely of flattened 

y6 Growth and Uses of Benzoin. { Am '&?# w ' 

tears or drops, an inch or two long, of an opaque, milk-like white resin, 
loosely agglomerated into a mass. More frequently the mass is quite 
compact, consisting of a certain proportion of white tears of the size of 
an almond downwards, imbedded in a deep, rich, amber-brown trans- 
lucent resin. Occasionally the translucent resin preponderates, and 
the white tears are almost wanting. In some packages the tears of 
white resin are very small, and the whole mass has the aspect of a 
reddish-brown granite. There is always a certain admixture of bits of 
wood, bark and other accidental impurities. The white tears, when 
broken, display a structure with layers of greater or less translucency. 
By keeping, the white, milky resin becomes brown and transparent on 
the surface. It is very brittle, the opaque tears showing a slightly 
waxy, the transparent a glassy fracture. It easily softens in the mouth, 
and may be kneaded into the teeth like mastic. It has a delicate 
balsamic, vanilla-like fragrance, but little taste. When heated, it 
evolves a more powerful fragrance, together with the irritating fumes 
of benzoic acid ; its fusing point is 75 C. The presence of benzoic 
acid may be shown by the microscopical examination of splinters of 
the resin under oil of turpentine. Siam benzoin is imported in cubic 
blocks, which take their form frrm the wooden cases in which they are 
packed while the resin is still soft. The Sumatra kind is imported in 
cubic blocks, exactly like the Siam, from which it differs in its gener- 
ally greyer tint. The mass, however, when the drug is of good quality, 
contains numerous opaque tears, set in a translucent, greyish-brown 
resin, mixed with bits of wood and bark. When less good, the white tears 
are wanting, and the proportion of impurities is greater. In odor, it is 
both weaker and less agreeable than the Siam drug, and generally falls 
short of it in purity and handsome appearance, and hence commands 
a much lower price. 

The medicinal properties of benzoin are very slight, but it is em- 
ployed for many different purposes. The Java chiefs are fond of 
smoking it with tobacco, and the worst kind is more esteemed by the 
Arabs than their own best olibanum or frankincense. In perfumery, 
it enters into a large number of preparations, such as fumigatory pas- 
tilles, Poudre a la Marechale, etc. ; the alcoholic tincture, mixed with 
20 parts of rose-water, forms the cosmetic virginal milk. In certain 
varnishes on snuffboxes and walking sticks, when heated in the hand, 
the agreeable odor of benzoin is emitted, and it is added to the spir- 
ituous solution of isinglass, with which court-plaster is made. The 

Am '£T J 7 6 arm } Alkaloids of the Aconite Roots. 77 

use of benzoin for religious observances amongst nations in various 
stages of civilization, and the steady demand for it in all ages, declare 
that it is one of those commodities the taste for which is inherent in 
our nature, and not the result of a particular caprice with any individual 
people, as in the case of Malay camphor with the Chinese. — The 
Chemist and Druggist, December 15, 1875. 



The authors have analyzed various alkaloids and their salts prepared 
from aconite roots by Mr. J. B. Groves (Weymouth) in the following 
way : The ground roots were treated with alcohol acidulated with 
hydrochloric acid, and the extract thus obtained was boiled down to a 
small bulk ; by precipitation with ammonia and agitation with ether, 
a mixture of bases was then obtained from this liquor. 

Roots of Aconitum ferox (Nepaul aconite) thus treated yielded an 
etherial extract from which a base crystallized by spontaneous evapo- 
ration ; this base yielded salts so difficultly crrystallizable, that hitherto 
they have been obtained only as varnishes ; it has been termed by Mr. 
Groves "pseudaconitina," which name the authors provisionally retain, 
hoping hereafter to be able to elucidate its true relationship to other 
bodies, but abstaining from renaming it till this is done. After several 
purifications by crystallization from ether and alcohol, this base gave 
numbers agreeing best with the formula C 36 H 49 NO n , the free base 
and the gold salt being examined ; the platinum salt is somewhat readily 
soluble in water and alcohol, and does not crystallize readily. 

By converting this substance into iodomercurate (by precipitation 
with mercuric iodide dissolved in potassium iodide), and regeneration 
by means of sulphuretted hydrogen (to remove mercury) and plumbic 
acetate (to eliminate iodine) in alcoholic solution, more or less change 
seems to be produced. One specimen prepared thus by Mr. Groves 
crystallized in well-defined rhombohedrons, which showed a diminished 
percentage of carbon as compared with the original "pseudaconitina " ; 
the quantity of these crystals, however, was insufficient for the com- 
plete determination of the formula. Other specimens prepared in this 
way from " pseudaconitina " by the authors exhibited the same kind of 
action, the percentage of gold in the gold salt being somewhat raised, 
and hence apparently the molecular weight of the base being lowered ; 

7 8 Alkaloids of the Aconite Roots. { Am 'fcl^ m 

these specimens, however, did not crystallize in the well-defined 
rhombohedrons exhibited by the other substance. All these specimens 
appeared to be eminently toxic : besides " pseudaconitia," amorphous 
or difficultly crystallizable alkaloids were obtained from the alcoholic 
extract ; but as yet these have not been fully examined. 

Roots of Aconitum Napellus^ when treated in the same way, yielded a 
mixture of at least two alkaloids, forming readily crystallizable salts, 
besides other amorphous bases. Of these two bases, one partially 
separated as a hydrochloride at a certain stage during the working up 
of the etherial solution ; this hydrochloride, when purified by succes- 
sive crystallizations, yielded numbers agreeing best with the formula 
C 31 H 45 NO 10 .HCl.iiH 2 O, the formula of the free base being C 31 H 45 NO 10 , 
and that of the gold salt C 31 H 45 NO 10 . HC1. AuCl 3 . The platinum salt 
of this base is also somewhat readily soluble. Although the salts (e. g., 
the nitrate and hydrochloride) of this base crystallize with great facility, 
it was not found practicable to obtain the free base in a crystalline 
form ; from all solvents tried, it separated only as a varnish. Com- 
paratively speaking, this base is inert ; its salts do not produce the 
tongue-prickling characteristics of aconite roots, but have a pure bitter 
taste ; Mr. Groves found that half grain doses taken by himself pro- 
duced no noticeable effects. 

The liquor from which this hydrochloride separated contained, 
besides a large quantity of this non crystallizable base, a second 
alkaloid separating from the etherial solution of the mixed bases by 
spontaneous evaporation in anhydrous crystals ; after several crystalli- 
zations from ether, numbers were obtained leading to the formula 
C 33 H 45 NO n , the air-dry hydrochloride being C 33 H 45 NO n ,HCl,3H 2 0. 
This substance agrees in physiological and physical characters with the 
" aconitia " of Duquesnel and others ; Duquesnel, however, attributed 
to crystallized "aconitia" from A. Napellus the formula C 27 H 40 NO l0 
(" Compt. rend.," Ixxiii, 207), which requires very different numbers 
from those found by the authors ; his mode of preparation, however, 
was somewhat different from that adopted by Mr. Groves, alcoholic 
tartaric acid being employed instead of alcoholic hydrochloric acid, and 
the extract being evaporated at a temperature not exceeding 6o°. 
Putting the alkaloid through the mercuric iodide process seems to 
lower its molecular weight. 

It seems highly probable, on comparing the above results with those 
of others who have worked on the subject, that the aconite roots con 

Am Fe b ur -x8 P 7 6 arm -} Development of the Chemical Arts. 79 

tain various alkaloids, or else that the alkaloid present is extremely 
alterable. Duquesnel has suggested that " aconitia " is probably a 
glucoside ; this view is quite in harmony with the results obtained, 
different specimens being not improbably mixtures of the glucoside and 
the product of its deglucosation. " Pseudaconitina," when left in con- 
tact with water and emulsin, emits an unpleasant fermentative odor, and 
partially dissolves, the solution containing a salt giving ajeddish colora- 
tion with ferric chloride, presumably an acetate ; no glucose, however, 
could be detected in the liquid at any stage of the action. — Journ. Chem. 
Soc. [Lond.], Dec, 1875, from Tear-book of Pharmacy and Pharm. Con/. 
Trans., 1875. 



(Continued from p. 35.) 

Tessie du Motay and Marechalf have introduced a valuable modification into 
practice, as they require no steam-boiler for the manufacture of the water-gas, and 
thus economise fuel, whilst the wear of the simplified apparatus is considerably re- 
duced. They heat coal with soda, hydrate of lime or of baryta in iron retorts, and 
thus decompose the combined water of these bases, which is then freed from car- 
bonic acid in the ordinary manner This procedure has been adopted by the New 
York Oxygen Company, who, in the manner described above, sell water-gas at the 
enormous price of 2 cents per cubic foot, or 1 cubic metre for 3s. 6&.% The mix- 
ture of lime and anthracite is heated in retorts, such as those described above under 
Tessie du Motay 's method of preparing oxygen. The decomposition takes place 
at a red-heat, according to the equation — C- r -Ca0-f2H 2 0=CaC0 3 - r -2H 2 , and lasts 
about fifteen minutes. Thereupon hydrate of lime is reformed by passing steam 
over the heated mass. The carbon is not exhausted until after three weeks, and is 
then replaced by a fresh supply of anthracite. 

That coal-gas contains large quantities (30 to 50 per cent.) of free hydrogen, and 
that the proportion of this ingredient rises, the higher the temperature of the retorts 
in preparing the gas, has long been known. Tessie du Motay and Marechal, whilst 
introducing the above-described procedure, have taken advantage of this circum- 
stance, and have passed coal-gas over lime in order to resolve it into carbon, hydro- 
carbons boiling at high temperatures, and large quantities of hydrogen. At the 
same time E. Vial$ adopted the same method, and has doubled, and even trebled, 
the yield of gas by " decarburation." Schinz|| doubts the industrial value of this 
process, on account of the outlay for fuel, and calculates that the decompostion of 

* " Berichte uber die Entwickelung der Chemischen Industrie Wfihrend des Letzten Jahrzehends." 

f "Bull Soc Chim.," 1868, i., 334. 

% H. Vogel, " Ber. Chem. Ges.," iii., 901. 

§ Vial, "Genie Industrie!," 1869. " Ding!. Pol. J.," cm'., 382. 
|| Schinz, " Dingl. Pol. J.," cii., 388. 

80 Development of the Chemical Arts. { Am - F J e b ur ;8 P 7 6 arm - 

water by means of coal yields a luminous gas for half the cost of coal-gas. Here, 
however, as we shall presently see, the depreciation of the plant has not been taken 
into account. 

If we now inquire in what manner the hydrogen, however obtained, is rendered 
luminous, we find two essentially different methods. The one depends on mixing 
the water-gas with hydrocarbons. As early as 18 34* Selligue employed, at Prais, 
the oils obtained by distilling the marl-shales of Autun in order to saturate the 
water-gas with gaseous hydrocarbons. White subsequently passed the water-gas 
through retorts in which rosin or coal was converted into luminous gas, and his pro- 
cess was carefully examined in 1851 by Frankland,f who concludes a laudatory 
report with certain propositions, of which the following are the most important: 

1. The production of gas from given weights of common coal or of cannel is 
increased by 46 to 290 per cent., according to the quality of the material employed. 

2. The luminous power is increased by 12 to 108 per cent., the more when coals 
are employed which produce gas of a highly luminous power. 

3. The quality of the residual tar is lowered, a part of it being converted into 
gas of a strong luminous power. 

It must be remarked that tar had not at that time the value which it has subse- 
quently reached. 

White's process recurs, with trifling modifications, under a variety of names. 

As the " systeme Leprince/' or "gas mixte Leprince," it was introduced into in- 
dustrial concerns at Liege, adopted by the town of Mastricht, and by some depart- 
ments of the Vieille Montagne at Verviers, and was critically described by Verver 
in 1848 in his work above quoted. Four years afterwards a similar procedure was 
elaborated by Baldanus and Griine,J for which Schaffer and Walcker obtained a 
patent in Prussia. Their process consisted in passing steam through retorts in which 
coal-shales, turf, and other combustibles were heated to redness. It differs, there- 
fore, from White's process herein that the production of hydrogen and its carbura- 
tion are effected in the same retort. An ordinary gas retort 8 \ feet in length, is 
said to yield, in twenty-four hours 8,000 to 9,000 cubic feet of this gas j and in 
* Wagemann's manufactory at Benel, near Bonn, where this process has been intro- 
duced, 1 cwt. of coal-shale was consumed per 1,000 cubic feet of gas. 

Essentially different is the second method of employing hydrogen for lighting, as 
carried out in 1846 by Gillard, at Passy, near Paris. He fixed on the burners,^ 
from which the water-gas issued, baskets of platinum wire, which, on the ignition 
of the gas, were heated to brilliant whiteness. Hence it was called platinum gas 
(gaz platine). The immobility of the light, even in a strong wind, the dispensing 
with lamp-glasses, which, according to Verver, absorb 22 per cent of the light, and 
the brilliance obtained on this principle, must be considered as advantages, although 
the intensity is not free from objections. Its use was not continued at Passy, but it 
was introduced by the celebrated firm of Christofle & Co., into their electro-plating 
works at Paris, || and was employed to light the streets of Narbonne. The hourly 

* Dumas, " Handbuch der Chemie," vii. 

f Frankland, " Ann. Chem. Pharm.," lxxxii., 48. 

% "Journal fur Gasbeleuchtung," 1862, p. 63. 

g Report by O. Henry, " Journ. Pharmacie " [3], xvii., 105; Dingler's Journal, cxvi., 222; and the 
Reports of Bromeis and Ververs. 

U Wagner, " Handbuch der Technologie," 1873, ii., 371. 

Am F J e°b ur x8 P 7 h 6 arm } Development of the Chemical Arts. 81 

consumption of gas being 3*234 cubic feet (=o-i cubic metre), the light was equal 
to that of 5-22 normal candles, and, though the lamps at Narbonne were placed at 
intervals of 50 metres, Verver pronounced the lighting of the streets as perfect. 

Latterly, since the preparation of hydrogen has been improved by Tessie du 
Motay and Marechal, new attempts have been made in Paris to light up large 
squares and streets with " platinum gas." Spectators, however, may find justifica- 
tion for the caricatures in the Parisian comic journals of that time, which represent 
the passengers in the streets, and even infants in arms, and the very dogs in the 
gutters, equipped with eye-shades to preserve their sight. 

Technical literature has the peculiarity that it records the introduction of novel- 
ties, but leaves us in the dark concerning their practical verification. It keeps a 
tolerably exact register of the births of inventions, but gives a very imperfect account 
of their career in life and of their deaths. Thus, with a single exception, we are 
left in the dark as to the permanent results of lighting with hydrogen. 

The experiments made with water-gas at the town Elizabeth, in New Jersey, 
yielded unsatisfactory results, as made known in 1865* Great depreciation of 
plant, heavy working expenses, and disproportionate consumption of fuel were the 
causes of failure. 

It was, therefore, the more desirable to ascertain in how far the process had proved 
successful in Europe, and, thanks to the kindness of several correspondents, we have 
succeeded in obtaining information. The fate of the method in Belgium appears 
from an extract from a letter which M. L. de Koninck, Professor of Chemistry at 
the University of Liege, kindly forwarded to the present writer : 

The systlme Leprince, which consists in the introduction of small quantities of 
water into the retorts in which coal is distilled, had for a short time a certain success 
[une certaine vogue), depending mainly on numerous reclamations by which it was 
helped out. Its chief advantage was supposed to lie in the fact that it drove the gas 
out of the retort, a purpose for which an exhauster or aspirator is now preferred. 
The system has never been employed for public purposes in Belgium, but merely in 
certain manufactories. Since the death of the inventor, which took place some 
years ago, it is no longer spoken of, and has been generally, if not universally, 
abandoned. This has been the case at Vieille-Montagne. 

In a letter dated March 18, 1874, M Landolt, Professor of Chemistry at the 
Polytechnic School of Aachen, confirms these statements. The use of water-gas is 
continued only in CockeriU's works at Seraing. At Simoni's cloth-works at Ver- 
viers, the process never advanced beyond the stage of unsatisfactory experiments, 
although certain technological papers have asserted to the contrary. In Maestricht, 
where the water-gas was used for some time for public purposes, it has, as Professor 
Landolt has been informed, failed to give lasting satisfaction, and has been replaced 
by coal gas two years ago (1872). Direct inquiries addressed to the municipal 
authorities have remained unanswered. 

The above statement of the introduction of the Drummond light in English mili- 
tary establishments led to an inquiry being addressed to the Chemist to the War 
Department, Mr. Abel, of Woolwich, from whom the following courteous reply 
was received, under date April 20, 1874: "As regards your inquiry concerning 

* Wagner, " Jahresberichte," 1865, 758. 


8 2 Development of the Chemical Arts. { Am ' fc^ 1 "' 

the introduction of the lime-light in military premises, I have to communicate that 
at the period you mention, experiments were made for a short time in two of our 
establishments, but that the question of its formal introduction has never been 
seriously entertained." 

The illumination of the galvano-plastic works of Christofle with water-gas was 
likewise of brief duration, and the process has been long ago abandoned. We are 
indebted to this firm for the following communication under date April 21, 1874: 
"In reply to your letter of the 17th, we have to state that the use of hydrogen in 
our works came to an end in 1853 on account of certain difficulties. {incon e vmietiti) 
which presented themselves, and that we have no longer preserved the documents- 
bearing upon the matter." 

It only remained to ascertain the fate of the so-called platinum gas at Narbonne. 
To do this with certainty, there appeared no other method than to appeal to the 
courtesy of the municipal authorities. The Mayor of Narbonne had the kindness 
to comply fully with our request, and to sign the following instructive and character- 
istic letter, dated March 16: "The relations of Prussia and France since the war 
impose upon me the greatest caution as regards inquiries. As the question, how- 
ever, is one of a purely scientific nature, I have handed over your letter to the Abbe 
Prax, chemist to the Agricultural Society of Narbonne, who has for a long time 
occupied himself with the subject. I have the honor to enclose a copy of the 
memoir which he placed in my hands." 

Account of the Water-gas in Narbonne from 1855 to 1865. 

"In May, 1855, I was sent to Paris by the municipality to test the water-gas of 
Passy. My report was dated June 8, 1855. The town adopted this method of 
lighting and heating, and came to an agreement with the company called the 1 Nar- 

"From 1856 the Passy system was in use in Narbonne. We modified the burners 
in several respects, as those of Passy were not sufficiently lasting. The high tempera- 
ture of the retorts occasioned from time to time the loss of a furnace, and after 
many losses the system of retorts was abandoned in favor of another apparatus, the 
' Cubilot' (Faye's apparatus). Towards the end of 1858 it was heated with wood 
charcoal, which soon gave place to coke on account of its costliness. At the same 
time we made important changes in the burners and platinum baskets, the latter of 
which were suspended instead of resting upon the former. 

" The illumination with hydrogen is brilliant but sensitive [delicat). The lamps 
in the streets must be well closed, as a gust of wind distorts the ignited platinum 
wick. The dust introduces sand, which forms a silicide of platinum, and this metal 
ultimately assumes an injurious crystalline structure, and is even partially volatilized. 

"In Narbonne all care was wanting towards the end of the career of the com- 
pany Narbonnaise. The manager, M. Crouzet, became a wine merchant in Paris. 
All superintendence was withheld, and the lighting became at last intolerable. In 
June, 1865, therefore, coal gas was introduced. As far as heating is concerned, 
nothing can, in my opinion, compete with water-gas in convenience and cheapness." 

Prax, Chemist to the Agricultural Society. 

Narbonne, March 15, 1874. 

On the evidence of these documents, the procedures for illumination with hy- 

Am F™-J 7 h 6* rm \ Development of the Chemical Arts. 83 

drogen, hitherto employed, must be condemned if anything further is desired than 
the display of objects and transparencies for the lecture-room or the stage. 

Hydrogen lighting was not represented at the Vienna Exhibition — a further in- 
direct evidence that it had not found any wider application. 

An objection, long known, depends on the high coefficient of diffusion of hy- 
drogen, and its consequent ready escape through the pores and fine chinks of the 
mains, a circumstance the more dangerous, as hydrogen is not, like coal-gas, at once 
detected by its odor. The diffusion-coefficients of gases, according to Graham's ex- 
periments, are inversely as the square roots of their specific gravities. 

But if lightness is a disadvantage for the delivery of hydrogen through pipes, we 
have now to consider the advantages springing from the same attribute. In Novem- 
ber, 1782, a dream long cherished seemed on the point of fulfilment. The Brothers 
Etienne and Joseph Montgolfier sent up the first balloon at Avignon by means of 
hot air.* 

With natural enthusiasm the populace of Annonay applauded them when, on 
June 4, they repeated the experiment of the previous year on a larger scale, and' 
king, court and capital congratulated the inventors when they repeated it soon after- 
wards at Versailles. The dominion of the air seemed won for mankind, to whom* 
space had now no limits. To day we look back upon the invention with a cooler 
glance, as, in spite of the lapse of ninety years, it has remained in its infancy. Wc 
are still unable to speak of aerial navigation, since the balloon, incapable of being 
steered, has remained the plaything of the air instead of becoming its ruler. One 
step, indeed, towards the desired end was taken when Charles, Professor of Physics 
at the Conservatoire des Arts et Metiers, at Paris, substituted hydrogen for the 
heated air in the balloon. On August 27, 1783, Charles, in concert with the 
Brothers Robert, skillful mechanicians, accomplished the ascent of the first hydrogen 
balloon in the Champs-Elysees, his invention being known as the Charliere in con- 
tradistinction to the Montgolfiere. Both systems were used for the first aerial voy- 
age, the one in November and the other in December of the same year. Previously 
the balloons had been sent up empty, or only tenanted by some animal. The first 
aerial navigator, Pilatre de Rozieres, conceived the idea of combining both systems, 
which was the occasion of his death. The fire in the Mongolfiere was communi- 
cated to the hydrogen in the Charliere, and on June 15, 1785, balloon and aeronaut 
fell shattered on the limestone rocks of the coast, near Boulogne. 

The motive for this unfortunate combination was the wish to raise or lower the 
balloon by stirring up or extinguishing the fire — a plan which makes ballast super- 
fluous, and which has been revived in a recent essayf by Captain Gaede (of the 
Military School at Hanover), and with due precautions would be doubtless practica- 
ble. Since the time of Pilatre de Rozieres 3,700 balloon ascents have been under- 
taken, and only sixteen fatal accidents have been heard of, J due chiefly to montgol- 
fieres, though the sea has been repeatedly crossed by aeronauts. Not long after the 
discovery of balloons they were used both for practical and for scientific purposes. 

* The historical details concerning aeronautics, where no other authorities are given, are taken from 
the excellent summary of Louis Figuier in " Merveilles de la Science," ii., 426-626. See also Marion, 
" Les Ballons," Paris, 1867; and Fonvielle, " La Science en Ballon," Paris, 1869. 

t Gaede, : ' Ueber den Bau Gefesselter und Lenkbarer Luftschiffe." Berlin : Mittler, 1873. 

% Stephan, " Weltpost und LuftschifTahrt." Berlin : 1874. 


S4 Development of the Chemical Arts { Am -fc 8 P 7 6f rm - 

Coutelle used them for military reconnoitering, and, according to Carnot's testimony, 
contributed essentially to the result of the battle of Fleurus. On the other hand, 
Captain Gaede considers the results attained by means of balloons, especially in 
reconnoitering fortified places, both in earlier campaigns and in the Franco-Prussian 
war of 1870-71, as insignificant. Napoleon I. regarded the military efficiency of the 
balloons of his time not more favorably. After his return from Egypt — where the 
attempt to convince the natives of the superiority of Europeans by means of a 
balloon ascent had failed, owing to their fatalistic indolence — he closed the military- 
aerostatic school which had been founded at Meudon under the management of 
Coutelle and Conti, evidently holding its military results as unimportant. 

Ballooning has been made subservient to the purposes of meteorology and 
physics before it was enlisted in the service of the war-spirit. Charles utilized his 
expedition for scientific purposes. On July 18, 1803, he was imitated by Robert- 
son, who ascended from Hamburg to the height of 7,400 metres, and who imagined 
that he perceived at this altitude a decrease in the intensity not merely of terrestrial 
magnetism, but also of fractional electricity. These statements induced the great 
physicists, Biot and Gay-Lussac, to undertake two ascents the next year. They 
refuted the above-mentioned views of Robertson, remarked the decrease of atmos- 
pheric moisture with increasing altitude, and made numerous and valuable meteor- 
ological observations. From the greatest height which they attained, 6,500 metres, 
Oay-Lussac brought back a specimen of air, and found that it had the same 
composition as the air of lower regions — a result, at that time, of capital importance. 
The last-mentioned ascents were all made with hydrogen gas. As the use of gas- 
lighting became more and more general the greater power which the lightest of all 
known bodies offers was sacrificed to the convenience which coal-gas afforded. In 
France, Barral and Bixio made their scientific ascent, in 1850, with the aid of coal- 
gas. In England, Glaisher adopted the same plan in 1864, and the numerous 
balloon voyages which have been made for the amusement of the public, from the 
love of adventure or for some especial purpose, have been undertaken with the 
same material. With coal-gas Green traveled in sixteen hours from London to 
Weilburg, in Nassau, in 18365 Flammarion and Godard, in 1867, from Paris to 
Solingen, performing 70 German miles in twelve and a half hours. Nader, who 
hoped to take photographic maps whilst floating in the air, had filled his balloon, 
" Le Geant," with 6,000 cubic metres of coal-gas, on his somewhat dangerous 
journey from Paris to Hanover, October 18, 1863. More recently aeronauts have 
returned to the use of hydrogen. But even in those four months of the greatest 
siege of a metropolis of which history bears record, when Paris depended exclu- 
sively, for its intercourse with the outer world, upon carrier pigeons and balloons, 
which had never before been called to so important a service, even then necessity 
compelled the use of coal-gas, because it was procurable with the least difficulty.* 
65 balloons went up from Paris between September 28 and January 22, carrying 91 
passengers, 363 pigeons and 2^ million letters, and for the most part with success. 
Only five balloons fell into the hands of the German armies : one descended in 
Munich ; another at Wetzlar ; one disappeared entirely, perhaps in the sea,- whilst 
the fragments of another were found, in the autumn of 1873, clinging to a tree at 

* Saint-Edme, " La Science pendant le Siege de Paris," 1871, 62. 

Am ^K r ;s P 7 6" rm '} 'Development of the Chemical Arts. 85 

Port Natal, in South-eastern Africa. All the others descended safely beyond the 
radius of the besieging army in France, or upon neutral territory : one in Belgium ; 
three in Holland ; and one upon a snowfield in Norway, 60 (German) miles to the 
north of Christiana, and 180 from Paris, which had been traversed in fifteen 
hours. * 

At that time, the power of steering balloons was more than ever felt to be 
necessary. Many of Montgolfier's contemporaries, including well-known physicists 
and mathematicians, such as Meusnier, Monge, Lelande, Sec, had pronounced this 
problem to be practicable. Fruitless and partially absurd attempts at its solution 
were not wanting. The celebrated inventor of the injector, Henry Giffard, was 
not deterred from carrying out new experiments in this direction in the year 1852, 
and the most recent attempts are based upon his ideas and those of Meusnier. 
Instead of the ordinary form, Giffard gave his balloon the fish-like shape of a ship, 
for the convenience of steering. A steam engine, with its chimney turned down- 
wards to obviate the risk of fire, and whose steam was simultaneously employed to 
maintain the draught, turned a screw sufficient to turn the balloon, but certainly too 
weak to overcome the strong wind which, on September 25th, drove Giffard's aerial 
ship before it. Public opinion then turned in favor of a project of aerial navigation 
opposed to all previous methods. Ponton d'Amecourt, De la Landell and Nader 
wished to attempt by mere mechanical force, without the aid of light gases, to 
navigate the air in all directions. The authority of Babinet supported this scheme, 
which, however, according to Helmholtz,f had no sound physical basis, and which, 
when carried into execution, proved a failure. 

When the Paris Exhibition of 1867 drew general attention to every industrial 
advance, Giffard received a commission to make aeronautics available for the 
" million " by means of a hydrogen balloon. He constructed a balloon of 5,000 
cubic metres capacity, the inflation of which, with hydrogen, generated by iron and 
sulphuric acid in wooden casks, cost 5,000 francs. The gas was subsequently 
prepared by him for a twentieth part of the cost of conducting steam over ignited 
charcoal, a method of which Coutelle had made use in 1794. The balloon was 
attached to a wire rope 300 metres in length, and was very skillfully secured. A 
steam engine of 50 horse power uncoiled the rope, and drew down the balloon 
with its passengers when the permitted height had been reached. This height was 
not great enough to occasion any danger from the expansion of the gas, hence 
Giffard was able to close the balloon with valves instead of leaving it open below. 
Thus, the loss of gas by diffusion did not exceed 15 cubic metres daily, and was 
easily replaced at intervals of three days. 

The next impulse to aeronautics was given, not by festivity, but by the terrors of 
war and the siege of Paris. The Academie des Sciences commissioned one of its 
members, Dupuy de Lome, to make experiments on steering balloons, and the 
government furnished the requisite means. Dupuy gave his balloon the fish shape,;!: 
and, in order to render its shape stable in the wind, he fitted it with an internal 
secondary balloon {ballonet), containing more or less air, and equal in bulk to one- 
tenth part of the main balloon. The air could be let out of this inner balloon by 
valves, or driven in again by means of a bellows in the car, according to a plan 

*Stephan, " Weltpost und Luftschiffahrt." Berlin, 1874. 

fHelmholtz, "Berl. Akad. Ber. u. Verhand. d. Ver. fiir Gewerbfleiss in Preussen," 1873, 326. 
% Dupuy de Lome, " Note sur 1' Aerostat." Paris: Gautier-Villars. 1872. 

86 Development of the Chemical Arts. { Am - F J e ° b ur i8 P 7 6 arm - 

which Meusnier had devised as early as 1783 to supercede the use of ballast. 
Dupuy's balloon was further distinguished by a very firm method of suspending the 
car, and by the use of a varnish impermeable to gases, and made of gelatin and 
tannin dissolved in pyroligneous acid. The propelling screw was not turned by a 
steam engine, but by eight men in the car. The balloon, containing 3,450 cubic 
metres, was filled with hydrogen obtained from iron and sulphuric acid, and went 
up at Vincennes on February 1st, 1872, carrying fourteen persons. After a flight of 
two hours it was let down at Noyon, a distance of 106 kilometres. By means of an 
anemometer, Dupuy was able to determine the independent speed of the balloon at 
2*82 metres per second, whilst that of the wind was 16 to 17 metres, and the course 
of the balloon made an angle of 12 with the direction of the wind. The problem 
of steering had, therefore, been solved, though only to a very slight degree — suffi- 
cient for a calm, but insufficient for overcoming even moderate winds. The speed 
attained was slight. Both conditions of success depend on the employment of 
stronger sources of mechanical power, and this, again, requires an increase of its 
power of ascent, i. e., of its relative levity with an enlarged volume. 

The calculations which Helmholtz * has lately put forward concerning the re- 
spective ratio of bulk to resistance and to speed in ships and balloons are therefore 
of great value. According to him the speed of Dupuy's balloon nearly attained the 
maximum possible for its size. In order to proceed slowly against a fresh breeze, 
with the sources of mechanical power at present available, the volume of the balloon 
must be three and a-half times larger than that of the largest ship of the line. This 
demands of the tissue with which the balloon is to be constructed a degree of 
strength scarcely possible. In fajt, the expectations of the inventors did not go be- 
yond the hope of steering the balloon when the air is tranquil. If the screws or 
paddle-wheels are enlarged they must also be made thicker and stronger, in order to 
preserve the necessary firmness. " We can only work sparingly with slowly-moving 
propellers of large surface, and to produce these of the requisite size without burden- 
ing the balloon too much, will constitute one of the greatest practical difficulties." 

With this sentence Helmholtz concludes his memoir, and the prospects to which 
he points fall very far short of the enthusiastic prophecies of such as are guided by 
their wishes rather than by sober scientific considerations. 

The problem of steering balloons turns on three conditions : the production of 
balloons of the lowest specific gravity 5 the construction of propellers, light, but 
capable of resistance, and of sources of power at once light and capable of perform- 
ing a high duty. In how far chemistry has prepared the way towards the fulfilment 
of the last condition, e. g., by means of aluminium, the future must decide. The 
first condition she has accomplished ninety years ago, by means of hydrogen, as is 
now fully recognized. 

Upon the consideration of hydrogen and oxygen should follow an account of the 
industrial applications of water. These, however, are so many-sided, not to say 
omnipresent, that they escape our reach. The most important will be considered in 
especial chapters. 

The elements oxygen and hydrogen form, however, as is well known, a second 
compound, peroxide of hydrogen, H 2 2 , which has latterly begun to acquire a cer- 
tain industrial importance. — Chem. News, Oct. 15-Dec. 3. 

To be continued. 
-* Helmholtz, "Berl. Akad. Ber.," 1873. 501. 

Am -fc! 7 h 6 arm -} Varieties. 87 


The Constitution of Phosphorous Acid. By A. Michaelis. — The author 
defends his formula for phosphorous acid, HPO.(HO) 2 , and he considers that Zim- 
mermanns trisodium phosphite contains one atom of sodium united with the phos- 
phorus ; hence its unstability. 

When phosphorous trichloride is dropped into boiling water, no phosphorus 
separates, but, if cold water is employed, a clear liquid is obtained, which soon be- 
comes milky from separation of phosphorus. This is explained by assuming that 
In the case of cold water, an acid containing P(OH) 3 is first formed, and that the 
bulk of this soon changes into its isomeride, phosphorous acid, HPO(HO) 2 , but at 
the same time a portion splits up into phosphoric acid and free phosphorus. — Deut. 
Chem. Ges. Ber., viii, 504-506. 

A new metal. — M. Lecocq de Boisbaudran has announced the discovery, by 
means of the spectroscope, of a new chemical element, which he calls " gallium," and 
which he affirms to be allied to zinc. The spectroscope character of gallium is two 
violet lines, one corresponding to wave length 417, and the other to 404, but fainter. 
A commission of the French Academy has been appointed to report on the discovery. 
Gallium is said to be found in a special blende from Pierrefite mining works, in the 
Argeles Valley. — The Amer. Gas-Light Jour., Jan. 3, 1876. 

Preservation of Fruit. — Fruit is kept in Russia by being packed in creosot- 
ized lime. The lime is slaked in water in which a little creosote has been dissolved, 
and is allowed to fall to powder. The latter is spread over the bottom of a deal 
box, to about one inch in thickness. A sheet of paper is laid above, and then the 
fruit. Over the fruit is another sheet of paper, then more lime, and so on until the 
box is full, when a little finely powdered charcoal is packed in the corners, and the 
lid tightly closed. Fruit thus enclosed will, it is said, remain good for a year. — 
The Amer. Gas-Light Jour., Nov. 2, 1875. 

Cucurbitaceous Anthelmintics — Some investigations have recently been 
made by M. Heckel into the active part of pumpkin seeds. These seeds have been 
much used of late for the expulsion of the tapeworm, for which purpose they were 
employed in the early part of the last century. The mode of their administration 
has hitherto been to give the bruised seeds in large quantities suspended in water, 
the outer envelope only having been removed. About two ounces of the seed was 
the ordinary dose. It is probable that so large a quantity contains much inert 
matter. Some recent observations apparently indicate that the active principle is 
contained only in the embryo. To ascertain whether this is the case was the chief 
object of M. Heckel's observations. He first administered, in two cases of taenia, 
about six ounces of the perisperm, tegumentum and testa, a purgative of castor oil 
having first been administered. The tapeworm was not expelled in any case. In 
two other cases the membrane surrounding the embryo was given — about an ounce 
— preceded and followed by a dose of castor oil. In each case the tapeworm was 


Minutes of the College. 

( Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ Feb. 1876 

expelled entire. Subsequent experiments yielded the same result. This membrane 
was then carefully examined, and found to consist of two membranes separable by 
maceration in water. The outer membrane contained a resin in small quantities 
(one in seventeen), which M. Heckel believes to be the active agent. He believes 
that the castor oil acts not only by its purgative effect, but by dissolving the resin 
and rendering it active. The second membrane contained more chlorophyll than 
resin. It must not be forgotten that these seeds contain a fixed oil, to which their 
qualities have been ascribed, and which may be obtained by cold expression from 
the seeds in the proportion of half an ounce to a pound. This oil has been used 
with success, in repeated half-ounce doses, in cases of taenia. — Lancet, Sept. 25^ 
1875, f rom Mon. Abst. of. Med. Science, Nov. 1875. 

Pharmacopceia of the Philadelphia Hospital. — 


Charta Arsenicalis Composita. 

■r. xcvi 

Belladonnae foliae, 

Hyoscyami foliae, 

Stramonii folia?, 

Extracti opii, 

Tabaci foliae, 

Fiat infusum, et adde — 

Potassii nitratis, 

Potassii arsenitis, 
Fiat solutio. 

Saturate bibulous paper, and dry for 

ad gr. xlviii 
gr iv 
gr. lxxx 

gr clx 
gr. cccxx 

Glycerita 01 ei Ricini. 

Olei cinnamomi, 
Olei ricini, 
Glycerina 3 , 

gtt. XXIV 

da f^iv 


Infusum Senna Compositum. 


Sennae foliae, 

Pulveris jalapse, 

Potassii bitartratis, 

Aquae bullientis, 
Macera per horas duas, cola, et adde — 

Tincturae sennae compositae, Oii 
Misce. Signa — Dose, a tablespoonful. 

Linimentum Chloroformi Compositum. 

Chloroformi, f3jii 
Tincturae aconiti radicis, 
Aquae ammoniae, da f^ss 

Olei olivae, f^v 
Fiat linimentum. 


Linimentum Saponis Viridis. 

Saponis viridis, £1 
Alcoholis, q. s. ut fiat solutio. 

Liquefac cum leni calore. 

Misce et filtra. 

(To be continued.) 


Philadelphia, December 27th, 1875. 

A stated meeting of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy was held this after- 
noon at the College Hall. 

Dillwyn Parrish, President, occupied the chair, and fifteen members registered 
their names. 

The minutes of the meeting held in September were read and approved. 

The minutes of the Board of Trustees, since September, were read by Wm. C 
Bakes, Secretary of the Board, and on motion adopted 

Mr. Bullock, on behalf of the Committee on the Centennial, reported progress. 
He and Mr. Shinn urged upon all the members the importance of assisting the Com- 

Am V J e b ur i8 P 7 6 arm '} Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. 89 

mittee in their labors, as it was desirable to have the Hall put in order in time to be 
ready for the entertainment of such persons as may visit us in the Spring. 

Prof. Remington, on behalf of the Committee on the Cabinet, reported the cases 
about one-half filled, with many other specimens promised. 

Prof. Maisch alluded to the cases which had been prepared for the Herbarium, 
lately presented to the College by Daniel B. Smith, as being in readiness to receive 
the books of specimens; their arrangement will soon be completed. 

There being no further business, on motion, adjourned. 

William J. Jenks, Secretary. 


The fourth regular meeting of the session was held January 18, 1876, Charles A. 
Heinitsh in the chair. Number in attendance, thirty. The minutes of the previous 
meeting were read. Dr. Pile inquired if the examination for Ammonia in Phos- 
phoric acid, prepared by Prof. Markoe's process, was performed at the meeting. 
Prof. Maisch explained that it was commenced there with the understanding, if com- 
pleted in time, it should be incorporated in the minutes, which were then approved. 

The Registrar presented to the library, from the National College of Pharmacy, 
a copy of "Formulas of non-officinal Preparations, District of Columbia, 1875" 
they being the result of a joint committee of the medical society and that college. 

Prof. Maisch presented, on behalf of the Executive Committee of the American 
Pharmaceutical Association, " Proceedings of the American Pharmaceutical Associa- 
tion, 1875, volume 2 3»" This is the largest volume yet issued, containing 899 pages of 
interesting matter. The Professor also read a letter from Mr. Prats Grau, Barcelona, 
and presented from him the first part of a work, entitled " Tradato Pharmacia Opera- 
toria," written by Dr. Fors Cornet, this second edition being edited by Mr. Grau. He 
also presented to the cabinet a specimen of Grindelia squarrosa, from Dr. J. H- 
Bundy, of Calusa, California, who is investigating its medical properties. 

J. W. Worthington exhibited Phosphorus of very handsome appearance, made at 
the RancOcas works, N. J. R. V. Mattison read a paper on " Factitious Balsam 
Tolu," (see page 51). Storax being the adulterant, Prof. Maisch said that styracin 
could be readily obtained in white crystals, from its solution in hot petroleum benzin ; 
it is slightly, but cinnamic acid freely, soluble in cold alcohol. 

J. J. Brown read a paper on "the importance of Garbling Drugs," (see page 52). 
Prof. Maisch was glad to see the young men active in calling attention to these 
matters, and from personal observation, confirmed many of the statements, but said 
that most of these admixtures could not be regarded as adulterations, but were the 
result of careless handling. Dr. Pile and others had met with instances in which 
packages had been sent out incorrectly labeled, and while we should have charity 
for the wholesale dealer who had difficulty in obtaining garbled crude diugs, it was 
no excuse for the retailer, who aimed to purchase at low figures, and whose duty it 
was to examine every article. Prof. Maisch observed that the bad articles were not 
all found in America. 

9° Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations, { Am - F J e b ur I 8 7 h 6 arm 

On motion, thanks were returned for the donations, and the papers read were re- 
ferred to the publication committee. 

A. P. Keller desired to know if the sale of alcohol on Sunday was a violation of 
the "Sunday Liquor Law." While difficult to answer this question legally, it is 
quite readily done when a desire to satisfy a clear conscience is the selling motive. 

J. W. Worthington exhibited so-called Magnetic Fountain Water from Slater- 
ville, New York. It is claimed to have the property of rendering steel magnetic. 
The sample present did not substantiate this. 

E. M. Boring exhibited Gluten pearls containing liquids and solids, and wished 
to know as to how they are filled. Also, Syrupus Scillse Compositus, in good con- 
dition, although made two years ago. (See " Am. Jr. Ph.," 1871, p. 101). 

J. W. Worthington exhibited a dropper for counter use, invented by Chas. A. 
Bowman, of Nashville, Tenn. It consists of an ^ ounce of sulphate of morphia 
vial, having a hole drilled in its shoulder through which a bent tube is passed ; over 
the neck is slipped a finger cot, having its end indented, and the cavity filled with a 

Dr. Pile exhibited " The Pharmacopoeia of the Dispensary of the University of 
Pennsylvania." Many of the formulas have been prescribed out of the hospital, and 
a desire was expressed that they be published in the Journal. 

J.- T. Shinn had found Basham's mixture prescribed, and there was a difference 
in the recipe as obtained from different sources. Twenty minims of Tincture of 
Chloride of Iron and one fluidounce of solution of Acetate of Ammonium are 
the proper proportions. 

Adjourned, to meet on February 15th, 1876, at 8 o'clock P. M. 

William McIntyre, Registrar. 


Rhode Island Pharmaceutical Association. — At the annual meeting the 
following officers were elected for the ensuing year: President, Albert L. Calder, 
of Providence ; Vice-President, James H. Taylor, of Newport ; Secretary, Francis 
J. Phillips, of Providence ; Treasurer, William H. Blanding, of Providence ; Stand- 
ing Committee, Norman N. Mason, of Providence ; Ferdinand Smith, of Providence} 
Charles H. Congdon, of East Greenwich. 

The Treasurer, Mr. Wm. B Blanding, presented his annual report of receipts 
and expenditures for the year, showing a generous balance in the treasury. 

A committee was appointed, with instructions to inquire into the reported in- 
fractions of the pharmacy law, and report what action, if any, is advisable or neces- 
sary for the Association to take to secure a better enforcement of the law. 

Several matters of interest to the profession were introduced and appropriately 
discussed by the members generally. 

Mr. N. N. Mason read a very interesting extract from Tomlinson's translation of 
Renoda's " Dispensatory of Pharmacy," published 1657, giving a quaint descrip- 
tion of " what an apothecary should be." 

Adjourned to second Monday in April. 

Am /db. r i8^r rm '} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations 91 

The New York Alumni Association of the Philadelphia College of 
Pharmacy met at Plimpton Hall, January 4th. 

Mr. Plummer presented a paper on " Chloro-phosphide of arsenic," and exhibited 
a specimen. He stated that this compound had recently appeared in this market, 
claiming to be prepared after the formula of Dr. Rauth, which consists in bringing 
phosphorus and arsenic, in a finely-divided state, together in the presence of hydro- 
chloric acid, the operation to be conducted with great care, and the presence of iron 
to be avoided, the liquid to be diluted with water so that 1 fluidounce of the solu- 
tion represents 1 grain of arsenic and one-sixth grain of phosphorus. The specimen 
presented was colorless, of a very slight phosphatic odor, and of a rather pleasant 
taste. He stated that he was unable to produce a like preparation by the process 
which, perhaps, is not correctly given, and thought that a combination of phos- 
phorus and arsenic, in a stable and soluble form, would result in a valuable neurotic 
compound, citing the reports of Dr. Hammond regarding the more definite action 
of phosphorus when combined with metallic bases, and which has been corroborated 
in the experience of other prominent physicians. Arsenic is known to exhibit an 
action upon the human economy somewhat similar to that of phosphorus j it seems 
an important subject for the attention of chemists. 

Mr. Wellcome read a paper on " Eriodyction Californicum^ a drug which has 
long been in use by the Spaniards and Indians of Mexico and California as a specific 
for chronic lung diseases, and as a certain cure for consumption. He exhibited some 
very handsome specimens of the plant. Prof. Maisch had received a specimen, 
which he presented at the College meeting last May.* 

Other matters of minor interest were discussed. Next meeting will be held Tues- 
day evening, February 1st. 

Cincinnati Collece of Pharmacy. — At the regular meeting, held January 
1 2th, the following officers were elected to serve for the ensuing year: President, 
F. L. Eaton 5 Recording Secretary, A. W. Bain ; Corresponding Secretary, Louis 
Schwab; Treasurer, W. H. Negley ; Board of Trustees — Chas. Faust, H. H. 
Koehnken, John Weyer, Chas. Schmidt. 

The reports of the retiring officers gratifyingly indicated the progressive condition 
of the College. 

The retiring President, Prof. E. S. Wayne, in a neat and appropriate speech, 
thanked the members for their attention and the kind assistance they had tendered 
him in the conduct of the duties that he had attempted judiciously to discharge in 
the past year, and earnestly hoped a continuance of the same for his successor. 

The newly elected President, Mr. Eaton, on being conducted to the chair by 
Messrs. Negley and Schmidt, spoke feelingly of the honor thus suddenly conferred 
upon him 5 promising, to the best of his ability, to serve his term in such a manner 
that no regret on the part of the members should ever be suffered for having elected 
him. Louis Sghwab, Cor. Sec. 

*The statement on page 279,, "Amer. Jour. Pharm.," 1875, that the leaves of Eriodyction glutinosum, 
Benth., have an intensely bitter taste, is an error, which we omitted to correct before. — Editor. 

92 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 

The British Pharmaceutical Society held a pharmaceutical meeting Dec. 
ist, the President, Mr. T. H. Hills, in the chair. Mr. Louis Siebold read a paper 
on " The Preparation of Pure Chemicals," in which the autnor treated on the diffi- 
culty of obtaining absolutely pure chemicals, such as might be supposed were 
intended by the "British Pharmacopoeia" by the tests given in certain cases. In 
others, the " Pharmacopoeia " allowed some impurities, without giving their quan- 
tity or the limits of the reactions indicating the impurities. The paper treated of 
oxalic acid, sodium and potassium carbonates and nitrates, potassium permanganate, 
sodium chloride and the subnitrate, subcarbonate and oxide of bismuth. 

In the discussion following, it was stated that the "Pharmacopoeia" rarely con- 
templated the absolute purity of the chemicals, which was really unnecessary; that 
different impurities often depended upon the kinds of vessels or the water used in 
manufacturing, and that manufacturers were often greatly obliged for having the 
nature of impurities in chemicals pointed out to them 5 the fact was dwelt upon 
that the quality of many commercial chemicals was now much better than for- 

Mr. Ince read a paper written by the late Daniel Hanbury, on "The Spices, 
Groceries and Wax of a Mediaeval Household, A. D. 1303-10." The paper 
relates to a portion of the accounts of the executors of Bishops Richard, of London 
(1303), and Thomas, of Exeter (1310). The articles enumerated in the paper, 
together with their price, are: Cere, wax; ammigdaU, almonds; ris, rice; zinsiber, 
ginger ; sucare, sugar ; canele, cinnamon cassia ; galonge, galangal ; nigrum piper, 
black pepper ; granum paradisi, grains of paradise ; crocus, saffron, or, as Mr. E. 
M.Holmes thought, probably safflower, the price being £5 9/. yd. for 38 J lbs.; 
gariofoli, cloves ; quibibus, cubebs ; macis, mace ; feniculum, fennel ; anisum, anise ; 
liquiricia, liquorice ; cyminum, cumin ; pyon, the kernels of Pinus pinea ; pyonad, a 
confection of the kernels with white of egg and sugar; gyngebrad, gingibretum or 
zinzibratum, preserved or candied ginger ; nux muscata, nutmegs ; zedevand, 
zedoary and others. 

Mr. Louis Siebold read a paper on " Senna Extracted with Alcohol," a prepara- 
tion which is extensively used on the continent of Europe. The author draws from 
his experiments the following conclusions : 

1. Strong spirit does not remove any of the active principle (cathartic acid) from 
senna leaves. 

2. The therapeutic action of cathartic acid is assisted by one or more of the con- 
stituents yielded by senna to strong spirit, though the latter produce no purgative 
effect when taken alone. 

3. Senna exhausted by alcohol is a reliable and pleasant purgative, but somewhat 
weaker in its action than the unexhausted leaves. 

Mr. Groves said that he had prepared pure cathartate of calcium, and found it to 
be of a very griping character. The mixed cathartates may be obtained by digest- 
ing senna leaves in diluted alcohol, and precipitating them by strong alcohol. Senna 
leaves exhausted by alcohol are devoid of the essential oil, and have, therefore, less 

Adjourned to February 2d. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Feb. 1876. 



Pharmaceutical Society of Paris. — The pharmaceutical meeting, held 
November 3, was mainly occupied by the report by M. Ferd. Vigier on the theses 
presented in competition for the prize, which was awarded to M Giraud for his " Com- 
parative studies on the gums and mucilages," the " Researches and extraction of 
the alkaloids, and Discovery of pterocarpina," of Mr. Cazeneuve, heing honor- 
ably mentioned. 

At the session held December 1st, a letter by M. George was read, asking, in the 
name of the pharmacists of Airne, to have the composition of certain preparations 
determined, which have been introduced into medical use since the publication of 
the Codex. The subject was referred to a committee of six. 

A paper by Messrs. Bretet and Cornillon on " The action of alkalies upon the 
formation of urinary sugar " was read. The authors are led to the following con- 
clusions : 

1. Alkaline medicines act upon the production of glucose in urine, by diminish- 
ing the saccharifying power of the diastatic liquids, and consequently by preventing 
the introduction of an excess of sugar into the blood. 

2. Bicarbonate of sodium acts not only upon the salivary diastase, but also upon 
the pancreatic liquor. 

3. Its action is much more observable upon the pancreas of the omnivora than 
upon that of herbivorous animals. 

Mr. Magnes-Lahens read an essay on " Tar," in which he stated that water would 
take up a larger amount of soluble matter from tar, which had been rendered pul- 
verulent by mixing it intimately with twice its weight of saw-dust. From 9 grams 
of such pulverulent tar (equal to 3 grams of tar) 1 litre of water takes up, at the 
ordinary temperature, 1 gram of extract in four hours; at 6o° C. (140 F), 2 grams 
will be taken up in five minutes, and from 27 grams of pulverulent tar it will re- 
tain 6 grams of extract, which is a saturated solution. He also exhibited a new 
inhaler, constructed by himself. 

M. Guichard spoke of pharmaceutical labels, and exhibited an apparatus for 
printing them. 

After hearing reports on the transactions of the Academy of Sciences, the So- 
ciety adjourned. 


Medical Statistics of Prussia. — A very interesting report on this subject is 
before us, and we propose to give in the following a very brief resume of the 
same : 

At the close of 1873, there were in the kingdom of Prussia 7,923 licensed physi- 
cians, 319 surgeons, 245 dental surgeons, 2,344 apothecaries (proprietors), and 16,- 
673 midwives. Calculated for the entire population, there was one physician for 
every 3,105 inhabitants, one surgeon or dentist for 43,623, one apothecary for 10,- 
496 inhabitants, and one midwife for 373 females born between the years 1857 and 
1824. However, neither these figures, nor the figures indicating the number of each 
class of persons residing in each province give a correct idea of their distribution 
This may be arrived at by ascertaining the geometrical mean, which is obtained by 



Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Feb. 1876. 

dividing them, in each province, first to the geographical square mile and likewise to 
each 1,000 of inhabitants, and then calculating the square root from the product 
thus ascertained, when the following figures will be obtained : 




Upon 1 geog. 
square mile. 

For 1,000 


Upon 1 geog. 
square mile. 

For 1,000 










'3 2 



I '7° 











*2 1 


*I 21 





'3 2 



I '22 







r 5 6 












,J 5 



















Rhenish Province, 









• J 5 





For the State, 







It will be seen that the supply of pharmaceutical and medical aid varies very con- 
siderably in the different provinces. The discrepancies are still greater if the smaller 
districts are compared with each other. Looking only at the extreme figures, we 
find that the geometrical mean of apothecaries in Berlin is 1*692, in Dusseldorf -503, 
but in Gumbinnen only '098, which figure is still lower in Coeslin, being *o88. The 
difference in the number of physicians is still greater, the figures being for Berlin 
25*311, Cologne 1*373, Dusseldorf 1*203, but only *n8 for Koenigsberg, *i6i for 
Gumbinnen and -208 for Coeslin. 

Changes in Pharmaceutical Journals. — Mr. A. E. Ebert has retired from 
the editorial chair of the " Pharmacist," his business connections requiring his whole 
attention. The " Pharmacist " will, as heretofore, be published by authority of the 
Chicago College of Pharmacy, the editorial labors having been entrusted to a com- 
mittee appointed by the College. 

The " Deutsch-Amerikanische Pharmaceutische Zeitung " has been discontinued, 
but its publication will be resumed if a sufficient number of subscriptions should be 

The Tennessee " Pharmacal Gazette " published its last number in November, 

Am Vr; 8 P 7 6. arm -} Reviews, etc. 9 5 


Tear-Book of Pharmacy, comprising Abstracts of* Papers relating to Pharmacy, Ma- 
teria Medica and Chemistry contributed to British and Foreign Journals from 
July 1 j 1874, to June 30, 1875 5 with the Transactions of the British Pharmaceu- 
tical Conference at the Twelfth Annual Meeting, held in Bristol, August, 1875. 
London: J. & A. Churchill, 1875. 8vo, pp. 652. 

This annual publication contains in its first part abstracts of papers of interest to 
pharmacists which have appeared during the preceding year, and are grouped under 
the three headings mentioned in the title, a fourth part, Notes and Formula?, being 
added, but no systematic arrangement being followed, which, however, is in a mea- 
sure compensated for by the copious index. The " Year- Book " embraces the first 
404 pages. The remainder of the volume is occupied by the usual lists of mem- 
bers, associations, the programme for the meeting, the minutes, papers, &c. Of the 
meeting we have given an account in our last volume, published abstracts of several 
of the interesting papers read, and expect to bring the others to the notice of our 
readers in a similar manner. 

The volume is creditable to the Association from which it emanates, and which, 
though little more than half the age of the American Pharmaceutical Association, 
has upon its roll a much larger number of members, a circumstance which speaks 
well for the pharmacists of Great Britain. Will American pharmacists profit by 
this good example, and unite themselves with the National Association at its twenty- 
fourth annual meeting in September next ? 

The Identification and Microscopical Examination of Crude Drugs and other Vegetable 
Products. By Mark W. Harrington, M. A , Assistant Professor in charge of 
Botany in the University of Michigan. Ann Arbor: John Moore, 1876. 
pp. 34. 

We have been much pleased with the examination of this pamphlet. There has, 
as yet, been proposed no systematic course for the study of Materia Medica against 
which weighty objections might not be raised; but a system based upon the organ- 
ological, physical and structural qualities of the drugs appears to us much more 
rational than their- arrangement according to botanical origin, although the latter 
has some advantages which the former can never attain. After the labors of Schlei- 
den, Berg, Fliickiger (" Pharmakognosie," 1867), and others, the ground has been 
well broken, and, as a contribution in the same direction, we welcome the pamphlet 
before us and regret only that it is so very brief, a mere skeleton only, which, how- 
ever, is the precursor of a more extended work by the same author. 

Hermapbrodism, from a Medico- Legal Point of Vienv. By Basile Poppesco. Chi- 
cago: W. B. Keen, Cooke & Co., 1875. 8vo, pp. 45. Price, 50 cents. 

A translation, by Dr. E. W. Sawyer, Lecturer on Obstetrics in the Rush Medi- 
cal College, Chicago, of the author's interesting thesis, presented to the Faculty of 
Medicine, Paris. 

96 Obituaries. { Am - XT"' 


Proffessor Dr. Joaquin DoNDe Ibarra died of consumption, in the city of 
Merida, Yucatan, November i, 1875. The deceased was born in Campeche, July 
6, 1827, where he received his education, until he removed to Puebla in 1844, 
where he studied pharmacy under Prof. Mariano Cal, and graduated with honors 
in 1846. 

In 1847 he went to the capital of the republic to place himself under the 
instruction of Dr. Jose M. Vargas, and passed another examination in 1849, and 
subsequently at the university, which conferred upon him the title of Associate. 

In 1850 he opened a School of Pharmacy in Campeche, and in 1853 one in 
Merida, laboring in the latter until a few months before his demise. During this 
time he lectured, for a number of years, on botany in the Catholic Institute, and 
since 1870 acted as Director of the class in Industrial Chemistry, founded by the 
Society "Jesus Maria." In the same year the State School of Medicine and 
Pharmacy was established, he being one of the founders, and elected honorary 
professor in 1875. He was likewise active in founding, in 1871, the only Medical 
Society in the State, and contributed much towards its usefulness. The Academy 
recognized his sterling qualities by making him an honorary member. 

At the exposition held in Yucatan, in 1 871, he exhibited chemical products and 
was awarded a first-class medal, and received another award for his red phosphorus. 
In the manufacture of ordinary soap he introduced various improvements, and 
worked out new processes for the tanning of hides, in which he instructed many 
artizans, having the public good constantly in view rather than his private interests. 
The manufacture of the safety phosphorus matches, in Yucatan, was introduced 
by him in 1869. 

For many years he was associated, in the pharmaceutical business, with Mr. 
Font, laboring principally in the laboratory. 

His literary labors comprise a number of articles originally published in the 
" American Journal of Pharmacy, 1871 — 73," in "L'Union Pharmaceutique," of 
Paris, " La Emulacion " and " La Revista de Merida." 

Dr. Donde was a man of sterling qualities, earnest in his labors, but modest and 
genial as a companion ; his loss was deeply felt by the community in which he 
labored for so many years as a teacher, pharmacist and public benefactor. 

Edward H. Andrew died in New York, January 5th, in his 45th year, of 
rheumatism of the heart. He was the son of Rev. Sam. R. Andrew, and was born 
in Woodbury, Conn., October 14, 183 1. He began his apprenticeship with C. B. 
Whittlesey, New Haven, in 1847. But his health failing in 1852, he traveled for 
two years, and was then engaged with G. W. De la Vergne, New York, until the 
war, when he joined the 9th New York regiment. Subsequently, he engaged with 
Caswell, Hazard & Co., and occupied, for thirteen years, an important position, in 
which he secured the friendship and confidence not only of his employers, but of 
the medical profession and the public, and enjoyed the reputation of being a most 
correct and reliable dispenser. 



MARCH, 1876. 



Since the publication of the paper, by the writer, on the " Ready- 
made Pills of our day," in the Proceedings of the American Pharm- 
aceutical Association for 1875, in which a pill press is described and 
figured, various improvements have been suggested, and have been 
introduced, which materially assist in facilitating the operation of 
compression. The accompanying sketch will illustrate : 

The cut represents a 
double machine, and with it 
two or more sizes may be 
made, two and three grain 
pills on one, and four and 
five grain pills on the other, 
one base of cast steel an- 
swering for both, 
j .3 By turning a conical de- 
repression in the top of the 
jgcylinder, a sort of funnel is 
^ made, which is a conveni- 
ence in introducing the powder. 

The countersunk depressions in the base, which take the cylinders, 
prevent them from slipping away in case a side blow is struck. Some 
of the machines have been made with the lower mould stationary, and 
no depressions for the cylinders to fit into ; this form has some advan- 
tages, but is not believed to be as useful as that described above, for 
an unlucky side blow may break ofF the stationary lower mould, as it 
is made of hard steel, and this, of course, would be a fatal accident. 

The middle depression in the base has an aperture which pierces it 
all the way through, and, after the blow is struck and the pill still 


9 8 

An Improved Pill Press, 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Mar. 1876. 

remains in the cylinder, the whole is transferred to this middle depres- 
sion, when one blow drives the pill through. 

In making a quantity of the pills, the base might rest on two upright 
posts, three or four inches high, and a box might be placed between 
the posts to receive the pills as they are finished. 

The writer still adheres to the opinion expressed in the former 
paper alluded to, that compression should not be resorted to as a mode 
of making pills, when the powder used is not readily soluble in the diges- 
tive fluids, and hence the machine has but a limited use. 

For acid or bisulphate of quinia pills, the machine answers very well, 
and as many as two hundred may be made in one hour, by having one 
operative to weigh the powder, and another to fill into the cylinder and 
strike the blow. 

Like everything else of this kind, a little practice is necessary before 
success is assured in every instance j some difficulty is experienced in 
compressing the pills if the powder used be very dry, as in the case of 
effloresced sulphate of quinia, subnitrate of bismuth, &c, &c. 

The effect of using a powder too dry is to cause the pill to split 
transversely, a minute quantity is apt to be blown out of the top of the 
cylinder when the blow is struck, and it is almost sure to clog the 
piston and render it necessary to clean it frequently, which is an annoy- 
ance, to say the least. 

If the precaution is taken to slightly moisten, with water or other 
suitable liquid, such a powder (and the amount necessary to add to 
accomplish the result is soon learned), the difficulties usually vanish. 

The pills may be set aside to dry by spontaneous evaporation of the 
moisture, or they can be dried artificially, by heated air, in much 
less time. 

When the piston does adhere, from becoming clogged as above 
mentioned, it may be readily released by pouring a few drops of water 
into the aperture on to it, which will soften or dissolve the powder. 

The machine may then be washed, and the cylinder dried quickly 
by passing through it a thick, soft piece of twine. 

In conclusion, the writer takes this opportunity to state, in 
answer to correspondence and inquiries in relation to this contrivance, 
that no patent has been procured for it, no one has the exclusive right 
to manufacture, and any who care to, are at liberty to use it, have one 
made by their own mechanic, or buy of either of the makers in this city. 

Philadelphia, Second mo. Sthj 1876. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
Mar. 1876. / 

Glycerin Dropper. 


;lycerin dropper. 


The arrangement for this purpose, noticed 
on page 89 of the February number of the 
"American Journal of Pharmacy " as an 
invention of my own, is only claimed as a 
slight improvement on the original idea of C. 
W. Wharton, of Nashville, Tennessee, a 
member of the firm of Wharton & Co., of 
that place. 

The little apparatus consists of a small 
morphia or other wide-mouth bottle, having 
an aperture bored through the curved portion 
of the neck, at an acute angle with the out- 
side edge, by means of a small, rat-tail file, 
after a notch has been made in the shoulder, 
by means of a sharp-edged file, sufficiently 
large for the round file to take hold, the ope- 
ration being facilitated by the use of turpen- 
tine from time to time. Care should be taken to have the bent glass 
tube extend into the bottle, as shown in the figure, and fit tightly, as 
otherwise the contrivance will work imperfectly on account of escape 
of air from the bottle. This precaution taken, the bottle is filled with 
the fluid excipient, and a small finger stall drawn tightly over the 
mouth, which completes this simple but useful arrangement, making a 
convenient and proper medium for the adjustment of liquid excipients 
in making pill masses, and where it is necessary to get them of a 
proper consistency in order to turn out a good lot of pills. It is free 
from the inconvenience of the old mode of adjustment, and has besides 
the advantage of neatness, its size making it little in the way on the 
prescription counter. By very light pressure on the top of the rubber 
shield, the liquid is forced out through the glass tube in single drops, 
as shown in the figure, and a continuous stream can be obtained by 
continued and harder pressure. The flow ceases instantly on removing 
the finger, and air enters through the tube equal to the bulk of liquid 


Cachets de Pain. 

| Am. Jour. Pharm. 
'[ Mar. 1876. 



For some time past, the attention of physicians and pharmacists has 
been directed to the wafer discs found in the market under the name 
of " Cachets de Pain," as a method by which the most nauseous 
medicines may be administered in a pleasant form. Quinia, aloes^ 
bromide of potassium and many other remedies are often very objec- 
tionable to the patient, on account of the disagreeable taste they 
possess, and to cover this without impairing their therapeutical value 
has long been a source of trouble and anxiety to the physician. This,, 
the inventor of " Cachets de Pain " claims to have accomplished. By 
his theory, the patient has neither taste nor smell of any medicine 
prescribed, whether unpleasant to the palate or injurious to the teeth> 
and the medicinal properties of the compound are not in the least 
impaired by the enclosure. 

To prepare the " Cachet " for administration, the compound pre- 
scribed is first placed in one of the concave discs, the internal surface 
of the rim is then moistened with water, another wafer disc is moist- 
ened in a similar manner and placed carefully over the first, the mar- 
gins are then made to adhere by means of a small lever press. The 
medicated " Cachet " is now ready for the patient, who, by first dip- 
ping in cold water, placing upon the tongue, and with a draught of 
water, is enabled to swallow with ease. Thus, in theory, the " Cachets 
de Pain " are all that could be desired, but the question arises, How 
will this theory hold in practice ? 

In the first place, the time required to prepare twelve " Cachets " 
is, at the least calculation, five times longer than that required to dis- 
pense an equal number of pills or powders, and often, when the discs 
are moistened and pressed, we find them adhering to the press ; this 
may be the result of an excess of moisture, or of more pressure than 
is actually required \ but they are then to be removed with care, other- 
wise they will break where the line of moisture extends, thus entailing 
the necessity of preparing another ; and after removing from the press 
the " Cachets" require careful drying, otherwise when placed in a box 
they will adhere to each other. You make answer, They were not 
properly prepared. Manipulate with all the skill at your command,, 
you will often have an excess of moisture ; and this, combined with the 
pressure exerted upon the thin coating, has a tendency to cause a rup- 

Am [our. Pharm. 
Mar. 1876. 

Cachets de Pain. 


Then, in the administration of medicines in this form, we are met 
with a very serious objection. When the physician, not being aware 
that it is necessary (according to the theory) to dip the " Cachet " in 
cold water before placing upon the tongue, fails to convey this fact to 
the patient, and often, by want of thought, when in possession of this 
fact, does not give directions how to administer, or, of proper manage- 
ment on the part of the patient, it is found that, instead of disguising 
the compound within, the " Cachet " materially assists in the develop- 
ment of the unpleasantness the physician endeavors to conceal \ for, 
when administered, the patient discovers that in place of descending 
the oesophagus, as expected, it has adhered to the roof of the mouth, 
and in his efforts to detach it therefrom, invariably succeeds in break- 
ing the thin coating, and then enjoys the felicity of that delectable 
experience he would avoid. This is not only my personal experience, 
but that of several physicians of this city, who, having submitted this 
method to a fair trial, have arrived at the conclusion that ct Cachets de 
Pain" are a failure. 

Then, again, is it reasonable to suppose for an instant that two sol- 
uble salts would retain their separate and distinct characteristics when 
in contact with waters ? 

And yet the inventor of " Cachets de Pain " states that they allow 
the presentation of two separate and distinct salts in one envelope, 
which, when dissolved in the stomach, will unite and form a salt in 
the nascent state. For the benefit of those who favor this theory, I 
state the result of two experiments. 

The first " Cachet " was prepared with carbonate of potassium and 
powdered citric acid, in a perfectly dry state ; upon dipping for an 
instant in water, an effervescence ensued. The other was prepared in 
precisely the same manner, with tartaric acid and bicarbonate of sodium. 
The result of this experiment was a violent elimination of carbonic 
acid, with force sufficient to rupture the coating. If this be the result 
of simply dipping in water for an instant, how can the salts unite to 
form one in the nascent state in the stomach ? It is impossible, simply 
because they have united before entering the stomach. 

With the jujube paste capsules of M. Planten, this can be accom- 
plished, for the reason that they require some time to dissolve before 
the liquid comes in contact with the contents. 

These capsules are recommended by physicians for the administra- 


Tinctura Capsici. 

Am. Jour. Pharrt.. 
Mar. 1876. 

tion of concentrated or nauseous medicinal substances, as being far 
superior to any method ever invented. 

It is to be hoped the day is not far distant when " Cachets de Pain " 
will be referred to only as a thing of the past, which, through want of 
merit and practicability, fell into disuse. 

Note by the Editor. — We can scarcely regard excessive moist- 
ening of the rim of the discs, or the omission of moistening the wafer 
capsules before swallowing, as sufficient arguments against the use of 
the cachets de pain; just as little as the excessive addition of an excip- 
ient or the mastication of pills by some patients can be advanced as. 
arguments against the administration of medicines in the form of gen- 
eral pills. Regarding the premature effervescence which is apt to take 
place, if a mixture of an acid and a carbonate is enclosed in the same 
wafer capsule, this may be obviated by keeping the two articles separate 
in two distinct cells, by inserting between them a flat wafer disc, which 
will prevent their coming in contact until the wafer has been com- 
pletely disintegrated in the stomach. 



Within the last few years many changes have been recommended in 
the manufacture of the various pharmaceutical preparations" of the 
pharmacopoeia, some writers recommending a change in the men- 
struum, others a change in the quantity of solid material to be used, 
while others advocate a more expeditious mode of preparation. Of the 
first I might allude to the Tincture of Rhubarb, for which glycerin 
has been highly commended as an excellent solvent, and it seems to 
me that it would make a very desirable addition, as a more permanent 
preparation can be obtained, — the glycerin preventing to a great extent 
the precipitation of the chrysophanic acid, the cathartic principle of 
the drug. On the second point, as to the quantity of solid material to 
be used, much has been written in favor of making each pint of fluid 
extract represent eight troy ounces of the drugs instead of sixteen, as 
at present directed. On the third point, recommending a quicker 
method of making certain preparations, I simply desire to mention a 
few without discussing the advantages or disadvantages, which is not 
my object at this time. In the preparation of tinct. opii camph. it has- 

Am Mar r ;8 P 7 6 arm: } Tinctura Capsici. 103 

been recommended to use spiritus camphorae and tinct. opii in such 
quantities as to equal the powdered opium and camphor, as directed 
by the pharmacopoeia; and it has also been proposed to make some 
tinctures, syrups and infusions from fluid extracts. Some of the 
changes recommended are good, and it might be well for the various 
committees on the preliminary revision of the pharmacopoeia to pay 
attention to this matter and experiment with the new formulas recom- 
mended, and, if they prove better than those now in use, to advise a 
change, otherwise let them pass by. 

Up to the present time, the writer has not noticed in any of the 
pharmaceutical journals a recommendation to change the menstruum 
used in the making of tincture of capsicum. The present menstruum 
is not only pharmaceutically objectionable, but is more especially so in 
a medicinal point of view. The object that every pharmacist has, or 
should have, in view, is to put forth preparations that fully represent 
the active constituents of the drug. To arrive at a definite conclusion 
as to what should be the best menstruum and best process of prepara- 
tion, requires a large amount of labor and experimenting, and involves 
also a loss pecuniarily. 

My object here is to advise a change in the menstruum, used in mak- 
ing tincture of capsicum, from diluted alcohol to alcohol. I have two 
reasons for doing so: 1st, that diluted alcohol does not thoroughly 
exhaust the drug, — the authenticity of which can be proven by treat- 
ing the dregs left after making the tincture, as now prescribed by the 
pharmacopaeia, with alcohol, which will dissolve the hot and stimulating 
principle of the drug quite perceptibly ; 2d, that the preparation, when 
made of diluted alcohol, as now directed, is rather unsightly, and does 
not present that elegant appearance as when made with alcohol ; and 
in these days of pharmaceutical elegance, it is requisite to make hand- 
some pharmaceutical preparations, so long as it can be done without 
sacrificing the medicinal qualities of the drug. It is just as necessary 
to make tincture of capsicum with alcohol as tincture of ginger. I 
doubt whether there is a pharmacist to be found that would think of 
using diluted alcohol for the latter ; and since the active consti- 
tuents of both ginger and capsicum are oleo-resins, and, as they are 
insoluble in water, we should object to the menstruum of the pharma- 
copoeia for tincture of capsicum, and should use only alcohol, which 
dissolves the oleo-resin quite freely. I would therefore submit the 

104 Bismuth and Iron. { Am A™ S^™' 

following for obtaining a more permanent tincture, and one which 
fully represents the active constituents of the drug : 

Take of capsicum, in fine powder, one troy ounce ; alcohol a sufficient 
quantity, moisten the powder with alcohol, pack firmly in a cylin- 
drical percolator, and gradually pour alcohol upon it until 2 pints of 
tincture are obtained. 

Pottsville, Pa., January 20, 1876. 

Note by the Editor. — The German Pharmacopoeia directs to 
prepare tinctura capsici by macerating for eight days one part of finely 
cut capsicum with ten parts of alcohol spec. grav. 0*830 to 0*834. 



The normal bismuthous salts are very definite chemicals, and most 
of them can be quite easily prepared. There are, though, a number of 
bismuthous oxysalts, which in general present great difficulty of pre- 
paration, owing to the variable nature of their composition. As several 
of these basic compounds are used in medicine, a certain regularity is 
aimed at in their constitution. But none of the various methods in use 
always yield exactly the same product by the same course of procedure. 

Of the normal salts, the citrate has been the most troublesome to 
produce in a desirable shape and of constant composition. The writer 
believes to have made the first advance towards a satisfactory method 
of preparing it. The process was published in the Pharmacist for Sep- 
tember, 1872, and consisted in crystallizing the citrate from a moder- 
ately dilute and not too strongly acidulated solution of the ammonio- 
citrate. Since then, the writer has adopted an entirely new method, 
which, for simplicity, rapidity and precision, ranks the process as abso- 
lutely perfect. The astonishing simplicity is so remarkable that one 
is surprised the process was not discovered long before this, since it is 
nature almost directly synthetic. 

If the ordinary bismuthous oxynitrate is heated for a few moments 
with a concentrated solution of an equivalent of citric acid, the normal 
citrate is generated as a heavy crystalline powder, and the nitric acid 
entirely freed and easily washed away by decantation. 10 parts of bis- 
muthous oxynitrate, 7 parts of crystallized citric acid, and 30 to 40 
parts of water are heated together for a few minutes, until a drop of 


Am M J ar Ur ;8 P 7 6r im ' } Bismuth and It on. i o 5 

the mixture forms a clear solution with ammonia water, the crystalline 
mass is then diluted with 8 to 10 times its volume of water, set away 
for a short time to let the citrate subside, and the clear liquid then de- 
canted. The crystalline sediment is now washed 3 or 4 times in a 
similar manner, drained from superfluous water, and either dried on a 
water-bath or by exposure in the open air. The yield is about 13 2-3 
parts, showing that the salt is anhydrous, and therefore its formula is 
Bi"'C,H„0 7 . 

The bismuthous citrate, as such, is not much prescribed, but it is un- 
doubtedly superior to either the oxynitrate or oxycarbonate, both of 
which are medicinally much employed. The ammonio-citrate is con- 
siderably used, and as no method thus far proposed for this salt has 
been particularly applicable, the writer's new process for preparing the 
citrate in a perfectly pure and definite state will make it possible of 
producing an ammonio-citrate with great ease and dispatch, and also of 
perfect purity. 

Dry bismuthous citrate, treated with the ordinary ammonia water, dis 
solves to a syrupy liquid, but a part agglutinates to a hard white mass 
unaffected by excess of ammonia ; if gentle heat is applied this dissolves 
and on cooling, the whole forms a crystalline mass, soluble in water 
These crystals, dried over a water-bath, are again soluble in water 
The yield from 8 parts of the citrate is nearly 10 parts. This product 
shows that there are several modifications of the ammonio-citrate, 
which may differ in chemical constitution as well as in physical proper- 

The chemical composition of the ammonio-citrate has not been cor- 
rectly given. The writer found that the same quantity of ammonia 
was required to form a neutral ammonio-citrate, as was separately re- 
quired to form normal triammonium citrate, with the equivalent of 
citric acid in combination as bismuth salt, and the decomposition may 
be written thus: BiC 6 H 5 7 +3(NH 4 OH)=(NH 4 ) 3 C 6 H 5 7 Bi(OH) 3 . 
The compound represented by the second number is assumed to be a 
combination of normal triammonium citrate with normal bismuthous 
hydrate, and this compound must therefore be looked upon as the true 
ammonio-bismuthous citrate, as all other formulae are based upon an 
analysis of the scaled salt, which must of necessity be an indefinite sub- 

The writer has also found that normal ferric citrate when treated 
with ammonia, absorbs an amount corresponding as normal triammo- 

1 06 Bismuth and Iron. { Am ]&! 7 ^ 

nium citrate, with the equivalent of citric acid contained in the iron 
citrate, and hence the true or normal ammonio-feroxycitrate is also 
produced as follows : 

Fe /// C 6 H 5 7 4-3(NH 4 OH)=(NH 4 ) 3 C 6 H 5 O r Fe(OH)3, that is tri- 
ammonium citrate combined with normal ferric hydrate. It is, there- 
fore, the iron analogue of ammonio-bismuthous citrate. 

The writer has also ascertained that besides the normal green ammo- 
nio-ferric citrate, two other ammonio-ferric citrates exist, correspond- 
ing to the di and mon-ammonium citrates. The formulae for the 3 
green double salts are, for triammonio-ferric citrate Fe'"(NH 4 ) 3 2(C 6 H 5 
7 ), for diammonio-ferric citrate Fe"'(NHJ 2 C 6 H 6 7 .C 6 H 6 7 or Fe"'(N 
H 4 ) 2 H2(C 6 H 5 7 ), and for monammonio-ferric citrate Fe //r (NH 4 )2(C 6 H & 
7 ) or F /// (NH 4 )H 2 2(C 6 H 5 7 ). The first one only is neutral, the other 
two are acid salts. If either of these salts is treated with ammonia in 
excess, the solution becomes brown, and in some cases, as for instance 
with the potassium double citrates, which do not hold the iron as firmly 
as the corresponding ammonium salts, ferric hydrate is precipitated. 
The reaction, therefore, indicates that a monado-fer-oxy-citrate was pro- 
duced. It is, however, remarkable that the addition of citric acid or 
an acid monad citrate does not immediately restore the green color > 
but in some instances proceeds very slowly, the transition from brown 
to green is not simultaneous throughout the solution, but progresses 
from the bottom upwards, even if the solution is occasionally shaken, it 
resumes this order of progressive action. 

The most surprising relationship, is however, evinced when ammonio- 
bismuthous citrate and triammonio-ferric citrate are brought together, 
and the change of color is the same as when triammonium citrate is 
added to the iron salt. The light green solution is further remarkable 
for the very important fact that moderate or strong acidulation with 
citric or nitric acid fails to separate the bismuthous citrate. This prop- 
erty, therefore, renders it possible of holding bismuthous citrate in acid- 
ulated solution, providing ammonio-ferric citrate is also present. 

The same amount of citric acid in combination as ammonio-bismuth- 
ous citrate, is required to change an equal equivalent of the acid com- 
bined as ferric citrate into the green ammonio-ferric citrate, as would 
be required in the condition of triammonium citrate. Therefore the 
result is expressed as follows : 

Fe^^C 6 H 5 7 +(NH 4 )3C 6 H 5 O r Bi(OH)3=Fe^(NH 4 ) 32 (C 6 H 5 7 ).Bi(OH) 3 . 

That is, one equivalent of triammonio-ferric citrate combined 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Mar. 1876. 

Citrate of Iron and Quinia. 


with one equivalent of normal bismuthous hydrate. This is a most 
peculiar compound, and possibly indicates that the normal bismuthous 
hydrate (Bi(OH) 3 ) differs in its affinities from the basic or oxyhydrate 
(Bi(OH)O) as the normal salts differ from the oxysalts. The com- 
pound treated with ammonia in excess becomes brown, but addition of 
citric acid again restores the green color, however, similar as in case of 
the ammonio-ferric citrate alone, but slowly. 

The new compound will doubtless become of pharmacal value, since 
the property of retaining the bismuth in an acidulated solution must 
strongly recommend it. 



" Triturate the sulphate of quinia with six fluidounces of distilled 
water, and, having added sufficient diluted sulphuric acid to dissolve it, 
cautiously pour into the solution water of ammonia, with constant 
stirring, until in slight excess. Wash the precipitated quinia on a filter, 
and, having added it to the solution of citrate of iron, maintained at 
the temperature of 120° by means of a water-bath, stir constantly 
until it is dissolved." — U. S. P. 

My experience is that the process is objectionable in consequence of 
too great a temperatue being employed. Precipitated quinia melts 
when added to a solution of the above temperature, and forms a gummy, 
sticky mass, which adheres tenaciously to the stirring spatula and sides 
of the containing vessel. 

When in this form, quinia dissolves very slowly in the solution of 
citrate of iron. 

To obviate this difficulty, reduce the solution of sulphate of quinia 
to the temperature of 50 before precipitating with ammonia. Wash 
the precipitate quickly with water of the same temperature. The 
result will be a light, friable, porous mass, which, when added to the 
solution of citrate of iron, also at the temperature of 50 , will break into 
small particles when stirred, and quickly dissolve. 

When precipitating quinia for other purposes, if cold water is used, 
the process will be facilitated, for the precipitate can be easily washed 
without forming a mass and sticking to the filter. 

Cincinnati, Ohio. 

io8 An Experiment on Antiseptics. { Am 'jfc!5r m ' 



November 15th, 1875, a number of wide mouth 8 oz. bottles were pre- 
pared, each containing 4 ozs. of water and \ oz. raw, lean beef. One 
of these was left without any addition, 20 of them were arranged in sets 
of four, and to each bottle was added 1, 2, 3 and 4 grs., respectively, of 
each of the antiseptics under trial, which were carbolic acid (or phenol), 
salicylic acid, chloral hydrate and benzoic acid. Four sets of bottles 
were thus occupied. The recent statement, that the alkaline salicyl- 
ates have no antiseptic power, coupled with the well-known fact, that 
putrefaction is usually accompanied by an alkaline reaction, suggested 
the fifth series, containing the same quantities of salicylic acid as in the 
other series, with the addition of half a drachm of dilute hydrochloric 
acid to each bottle. Finally, to the twenty-second bottle was added 
the same amount of hydrochloric acid alone, for comparison. The 
whole were loosely covered to exclude dust, and set away at the usual 
temperature of the store, varying from perhaps 55 to 70 . From 
pressure of business, but little attention was paid to them, and no record 
was kept of their progressive changes ; but, seven weeks later (Jan. 
3d, 1876), they were all examined. The following were found more 
or less putrid, with an offensive ammoniacal odor, much like that of 
stale urine, viz : The phenol, 1, 2 and 3 grs., salicylic acid the same, 
benzoic acid 1 gr. and all those containing chloral. In the three contain- 
ing salicylic acid, the liquid was covered with a thick coating of mould, 
which was not the case with any of the others, illustrating the fact, 
which had been previously noticed, that a very small amount of this 
acid not only does not prevent, but even seems to favor the growth of 
mould. The bottle containing no antiseptic was, of course, quite of- 
fensive, but was not mouldy. The following were free from odor, and 
apparently unchanged, viz : All that contained salicylic and hydro- 
chloric acids combined, the 2, 3 and 4 grain benzoic acid, the 4 grain 
phenol, which still preserved, as at first, its slightly carbolic or tarry 
smell. In all these the water remained clear, or nearly so, the meat 
having a whitish color and a soaked look. In the sample to which 
hydrochloric acid alone had been added, the water was clear and inodor- 
ous, but had a white, translucent substance, something like coagulated 
albumen, floating in it. No microscopic examination was made. 

From the results of this experiment may be fairly deduced the fol- 

Am Ma°r ur i876 arm - { Basicity of the Phosphorus Acids. 1 09 

lowing conclusions, su.bject, of course, to correction by further ob- 
servations : 

1. Of the four antiseptics mentioned, benzoic acid is effective in 
the smallest quantity, phenol and salicylic acids coming next, and be- 
ing about equal, while chloralhydrate, at least in the ratio of one part 
in 500, has little or no permanent value. 

2. Salicylic and hydrochloric acids combined are more effective than 
either of the four mentioned. How much of this effect may be due 
to each, and how much to the combination, could only be determined 
by further trial, as also how small a quantity of hydrochloric acid would 
be required. In this experiment, it will be noticed that this was used 
in about four times the largest quantity of the other agents, as it was 
not expected to act as an antiseptic, but only to aid the salicylic acid, 
preventing its extinction by the alkaline products of putrefaction. Yet> 
if so small a proportion (less than 1 per cent.) of this acid could so ef- 
fectively retard decomposition, the fact might sometimes be used with 
advantage, as it would in many cases be convenient and unobjection- 

One such experiment, of course, settles nothing ; but these results 
are given for what they are worth, with the hope that others may ex- 
tend and verify or correct them. The effect of the hydrochloric acid 
in this case was certainly unexpected by the experimenter, and would 
seem to suggest further investigation. It will be noticed that the fail- 
ure of the chloral in this experiment does not at all conflict with the 
results reported by T. Roberts Baker to the American Pharmaceut- 
ical Association at the last meeting, as the weakest solution that he 
found efficient was 5 grs. to the fluidounce, or 25 times the strength 
of any used in this case, while he found that a 2 gr. solution only re- 
tarded decomposition without permanently preventing it. 

Elmira, N. T. 9 Feb., 1876, 



Phosphorus, sulphur, arsenic and antimony are possessed of certain 
common characteristics which indicate a very close relationship between 
them, and, although various anomalies spring from each particular 
member of the series, it is nevertheless plain that they virtually effect 
the transition from metals to metalloids, and from metalloids to the 

1 1 o Basicity of the Phosphorus Acids. { A % J a 7; 8 p 7 6 arm ' 

limitless sphere of the nitrogen and carbon compounds. Phosphorus 
joins hands, as it were, with the organic and protorganic worlds, con- 
stituting a sort of connecting link, forming them into a continuous 

The acids of phosphorus mark the transition from the mineral to 
the carbon acids. Their basicity, for this reason, is peculiar, showing 
the properties of both, and being entirely like neither. Organic or 
carbon acids are compounds of oxygenated hydrocarbon radicals with 
hydroxyl. The phosphorus acids are, to a certain extent, analogous 
to these, hence they may be described as compounds of oxygenated 
hydrophosphorus radicals with hydroxyl. The definition, however, is 
not capable of general application, by virtue of the fact that the com- 
bined hydrogen is wholly and completely typic in one member of the 
group, namely, metaphosphoric acid. This acid, however, is the link 
adjacent to the mineral acids, in which proximity the hydrogen has 
become wholly typic, and hence the definition is not appropriately 
applicable in this case. 

Assuming that the acids of phosphorus are formed from trihydric 
phosphide (PH 3 ) by the interpolation of oxygen, and we have : 
Hypophosphorous acid, P0 2 H 3 =P0 2 H 2 ,H=POH 2 (OH). 
Phosphorous acid, P0 3 H 3 =P0 3 H,H 2 ==POH(OH) 2 . 
Orthophosphoric acid, P0 4 H 3 =P0 4 ,H 3 ==PO(OH) 3 . 
But comprehending all the acids, and we have, more fully, thus : 
Hypophosphorous acid, P 2 4 H 6 =P 2 4 H 4 ,H 2 =(PO) 2 H 4 (OH) 2 . 
Phosphorous acid, P 2 6 H 6 =P 2 6 H 2 ,H 4 ^PO) 2 H 2 (OH) 4 . 
Orthophosphoric acid, P 2 8 H 6 ^P 2 8 ,H 6 =(P 2 4 )H 2 (OH) 4 . 
Pyrophosphoric acid, P 2 7 H 4 =P 2 7 ,H 4 =(P 2 4 )H(OH) 3 . 
Metaphosphoric acid, P 2 6 H 2 =P 2 6 ,H 2 =(P 2 4 )(OH) 2 . 

This arrangement reveals a number of very important facts. It 
shows the regular gradation and development of the series in a most 
lucid and comprehensive manner, and the gradual evolution from the 
hydrophosphorus, PH 3 , becomes evident in every member. The rela- 
tion to the carbon acids is most apparent in the two lowest derivatives, 
in which the accumulation of oxygen has not entirely overcome the 
direct contact of phosphorus and hydrogen. In the hypophosphorous 
acid, only one-third of the combined hydrogen is typic, and in the 
phosphorous acid two-thirds. The evolution of phosphorus hydrides 
from either of these two acids by means of heat shows that the whole 

Am Ma" r 'x8 P 7 6? rm '} Basicity of the Phosphorus Acids. 1 1 1 

of their hydrogen is not replaceable, and that only that portion is typic 
which is liberated, by means of heat, in combination with oxygen. In 
the orthophosphoric acid, the accretion of oxygen has so far progressed 
that the direct contact between phosphorus and hydrogen is no longer 
maintained, since the balance of affinity now leans strongly towards 
the oxygen. Heat now expels hydrogen only in combination with 
oxygen, but no amount of heat can expel more than two-thirds of all 
the hydrogen combined. The remaining third, constituting the typic 
hydrogen of metaphosphoric acid is absolutely beyond the direct influ- 
ence of phosphorus, and the powerful affinity of phosphorus for oxy- 
gen, on the one side, and oxygen for hydrogen on the other, retains 
the compactness of the union beyond the ordinary effects of molecular 

By this arrangement we also discover the appalling inconsistency 
of the new notation in its treatment of the phosphoric acids. The 
misconception of the tetrabasicity of pyrophosphoric acid, and the erro- 
neous theory of the trivalent radical phosphoryl, (PO) r// , together with 
the entire new notation of the phosphoric acids, are thereby wholly 
refuted. Trivalent phosphoryl is utterly inapplicable in case of pyro- 
phosphoric and metaphosphoric acids, as no satisfactory expression can 
be obtained by its use. It is also plain that a trivalent radical cannot 
be common to a monobasic, a tribasic and a tetrabasic acid. Further- 
more, the inconsistency of the notation must refute itself which rep- 
resents the three acids thus : 

Metaphosphoric acid, P0 3 H=P0 2 (OH). 
Orthophosphoric acid, P0 4 H 3 =P0(0H) 3 . 
Pyrophosphoric acid, P 2 7 H 4 =P 2 3 (OH) 4 . 

Which indicates that there are as many independent radicals as acids, 
and that while (P0 2 )' is univalent, (PO)'" is trivalent and (P 2 O s ) iv quad- 
rivalent. There is neither sense or reason in such an assumption in 
view of the fact that the three acids differ from one another by two 
equivalents of hydroxyl less for every equivalent of oxygen in excess 
of the radical, P 2 2 , as is shown by the following : 

Metaphosphoric acid, P 2 4 (OH) 2 =P 2 2 (OH) 2 2 . 
Pyrophosphoric acid, P 2 3 (OH) 4 =P 2 2 (OH) 4 0. 
Orthophosphoric acid, P 2 2 (OH) 6 =P 2 2 (OH) 6 . 

According to the new notation of the phosphoric acids, metaphos- 
phoric acid, (P0 3 H), is first, orthophosphoric acid, (P0 4 H 3 ), second, 

1 1 2 Basicity of the Phosphorus Acids. { Am 'ifc8 7 h 6 ann ' 

and pyrophosphoric acid, (P 2 7 H 4 ), third in the series. But, as the 
first and second members differ by one equivalent of hydroxyl, (OH), 
the second and third would vary by the same difference, and hence 
pyrophosphoric acid under this law should be written P0 5 H 4 . This 
does not, however, agree with facts, as was exhibited by the com- 
parison just preceding. 

By the new arrangement as above proposed, which in reality is the 
natural and true system of notation for the phosphorus acids, being in 
perfect consonance with the typal theory, all the phosphoric acids con- 
tain the bivalent radical phosphoryl, (P 2 4 )", in two cases in combina- 
tion with partially affected or typoid hydrogen and hydroxyl, and in one 
wholly in union with hydroxyl. The affected or typoid hydrogen, 
being yet distantly influenced by the phosphorus of the radical, does 
not assume the function of hydroxyl, and therefore, particularly in the 
case of orthophosphoric acid, it ordinarily possesses no salifying power \ 
consequently this affected hydrogen does not virtually represent basisity. 
It is, however, replaceable by bases, under extraordinary conditions •> 
but in such instances the highly basic character of the compound 
barely admits of classification as a true salt. 

Ignoring the indifferent hydrogen, it will then be seen that meta- 
phosphoric acid is dibasic, pyrophosphoric acid tribasic and orthophos- 
phoric acid tetrabasic. But, admitting the full value of the hydrogen, 
then metaphosphoric acid remains dibasic, pyrophosphoric acid be- 
comes tetrabasic, and orthophosphoric hexabasic. 

For convenience sake, they may be represented as monobasic, di- 
basic and tribasic. It is, however, atomically correct that they be 
designated as bibasic, tetrabasic and hexabasic, in which case the tetra- 
basisity of pyrophosphoric acid, as at present held, would be correct, 
but in every other instance it would be, typically considered, utterly 

But absolute typic value is the perfect index of basicity, therefore 
typoid hydrogen is not admissible in a determination of that quality, 
and as various indications point favorably that way, it appears that the 
correct basic value of the phosphoric acids is shown by the new ar- 
rangement, in which they are respectively dibasic, tribasic and tetra- 
basic, regardless of typoid hydrogen. 

Although fused sodium pyrophosphate is correctly represented by 
Na 4 (P 2 7 ), it appears highly probable that the aqueous solution con- 
tains it as Na 3 H (P 2 7 ) (NaOH.) This expression, in a measure, ex- 

Am, ia?. r 'i8 7 h 6 arm '} Ammonium in Diluted Phosphoric Acid. 1 13 

plains the fact why the sodio-ferric pyrophosphate precipitated by alco- 
hol should yield only 2(Na 4 P 2 7 ) (Fe 43 (P 2 7 ), instead of 3 (Na 4 P 2 7 ) 
(Fe 4 3(P 2 7 )), as which it exists in solution. For if we represent the 
sodium salt in solution by 3(Na 3 H(P 2 7 )NaOH) the first effect of the 
alcohol will be a tearing away of the exposed alkali ; the immediate 
result of this is the formation of a corresponding amount of acid salt, 
which also dissolves, while in the mean time the remnant precipitates 
in the anhydrous condition. The decomposition is clearly illustrated 
by the following : 

3(Na 5 P 2 O r )+3(OH 2 =3(Na 3 H(P 2 7 )NaOH). 
Na 9 H 3 (P 2 7 )3(NaOH)3-2(Na 4 P 2 7 )+NaH 4 (P 2 7 )+ 3 (NaOH). 
NaH 3 (P 2 7 )+ 3 (NaOH)=Na 4 P 2 7 -r-3(OH 2 ), or, 
Na 3 H(P 2 7 )(NaOH)+ 2 (OH 2 ). 



{Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, February 15 ) 
The process, recently offered by Prof. Markoe, for making diluted 
phosphoric acid, has been a fruitful source of controversy among 
pharmacists during the past few months, and many objections have 
been advanced, and advantages claimed, with the addition of but few 
facts to sustain them. 

I have endeavored, under the direction of Prof. Maisch, to fully 
investigate one of these objections, namely, that in reference to the 
amount of ammonium generated during the process. 

Two lots of the acid were prepared, one in the proportion of 12 
ounces of nitric acid, 4 cubic centimetres of bromine and 2 ounces of 
phosphorus. The bromine was dissolved in the nitric acid and the 
phosphorus afterward added. The reaction commenced at 65 F., 
and was allowed to continue until the temperature reached 95 , when 
the flask was placed in water of 6o°, where it remained for 24 hours. 
The phosphorus not then being entirely dissolved, heat was applied and 
very gradually increased until it reached 140 , at which degree it was 
maintained for 2 hours before the solution was completed. The usual 
process was then employed of heating in a capsule until free from nitric 
acid, and diluting with water to bring it to the officinal strength. In 
the second experiment, the same proportions were adopted with the 
addition of 12 ounces of water. Little or no reaction occurred, unless 


1 14 Ammonium in Diluted Phosphoric Acid. {^JgaJIP*' 

the temperature was maintained at from ioo° to 130 , and the mixture 
was finally boiled to dissolve the last portions of phosphorus. 

A third sample was obtained from Dr. Pile, who employed no heat 
in the process, but on the contrary, kept the mixture in cool water 
until complete solution of the phosphorus was effected. A fourth 
sample was procured from a fellow-student, C. S. Hallberg, who 
placed the mixture in cool water for 24 hours, during which time about 
two-thirds of the phosphorus was dissolved, and then resorted to boil- 
ing for completing the solution. 

Owing to the impossibility of estimating phosphoric acid by direct 
saturation, on account of the very gradual change from an acid to an 
alkaline condition, a seemingly intricate, but practically very simple 
process was adopted. Half a fluidounce of the diluted acid was super- 
saturated with caustic soda, and the mixture placed in a small flask, to 
which was adapted, by means of a tightly fitting cork, a bent glass tube, 
the end of which was allowed to dip slightly into 10 cubic centimetres 
of a decinormal solution of oxalic acid. The apparatus was so con- 
structed as to prevent the possibility of any of the alkali passing me- 
chanically into the distillate, and, as a further precaution, preference 
was given to caustic soda for saturating the acid, so that in case the 
smallest quantity passed over, it might be detected by the flame test, 
which, however, in every experiment failed to reveal a trace. Heat 
was then applied by means of a sand bath, until one-half or more of the 
liquid had distilled over. To the mixture of the distillate and oxalic 
acid solution, previously reddened with litmus, was added a decinormal 
solution of ammonia, the deficiency required for neutralization gave 
the cubic centimetres of a decinormal solution of ammonia equal to 
that contained in the diluted phosphoric acid, and, from this, the re- 
sults in the subjoined table were calculated. With one exception, two 
experiments were made with each sample, and when there were any 
differences, which, however, were very slight, an average was taken 
upon which the calculations were based. From the proportion of 
phosphorus directed by the Pharmacopoeia, there are found to be but 
56*90 grains of actual phosphoric acid (H 3 P0 4 ) in each fluidounce. 
Therefore, the foundation was comparatively small to build the estima- 
tion on. The following schedule gives the results, which, small as 
they may appear, were, nevertheless, readily obtained by the method 
above described. 

' } Hydrargyrum Iodidum Rubrum , etc. 115 


Cubic centimetres 
ofdecinormal solu- 
tion of NH 4 found 
in fl. gi of Dil. 
Phos. Acid. 

Amount of NH 4 in 
fl. of Dil. Phos. 

*%> >P tj 

■s-s < 

Percentage of H 3 
P0 4 combined 
with NH r 

sfS • 

2 s « 

Percentage of (N 
H 4 ),HP0 4 in Dil. 
Phos. Acid. 


1 1 

No. 1 


.0194 grs. 

.0529 grs. 


.0711 grs. 


No. 2 


.0055 " 

.0149 44 


.0201 " 


No. 3 


0430 " 

.1170 " 


.1576 « 


No. 4 


.0097 " 

.0264 " 


.0355 " 


No. 3 yielded a much larger amount of ammonium than any of the 
others, which is accounted for by the fact of its having been prepared 
at a comparatively low temperature. 

A moderate heat was employed in the preparation of No. 1, which, 
therefore, gave a smaller amount, while in the case of Nos. 2 and 4, 
the boiling temperature was applied, consequently a much smaller yield 
was obtained. 

It is evident that these results are entirely too insignificant to be of 
any practical importance, yet, after all, as has been frequently stated by 
others, it is difficult to improve on the first process offered by the U. S. 
Pharmacopoeia, against which the principal objection offered is the re- 
quisition of constant attention to prevent explosion or breakage j this, 
however, is not substantiated by the experience, either of myself or 
those of whom inquiry has been made. 



[Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, February i$th.) 

The disadvantages arising from the use of mercuric chloride in the 
preparation of the above-named mercurials have long been known 
to pharmaceutists. Owing to its comparative insolubility in water, a 
large bulk of liquid is required in order to obtain any appreciable quan- 
tity of product, thus necessitating the use of large vessels when manu- 
facturing in any quantity. Heat is also required, in order that the 
water shall take up as much of the mercuric chloride as possible, and 
thus lessen the disadvantage of bulky utensils. This, however, only 
partially removes the difficulty, and runs the additional risk of breakage 
of vessels, etc. It seems, therefore, that the corrosive sublimate used 
in the officinal processes for making the red iodide and yellow 

n6 Hydrargyrum Iodidum Ruhrum, etc, { Km '^;^X m ' 

oxide of mercury of the U. S. P., could be replaced with con- 
siderable advantage by some mercurial salt or preparation pos- 
sessing the advantages of ready solubility, and concentration in small 
bulk of a considerable quantity of mercury. For this purpose, I would 
suggest the mercuric nitrate. It can readily be prepared by dissolving 
mercury in a slight excess of nitric acid, and then can be used either 
strong or diluted with water to any degree necessary. For general 
purposes, the officinal liquor hydrargyri nitratis answers admirably. 
Two troy ounces of liq. hydrarg. nit. (representing 384 grs. mercury) 
were diluted with an equal bulk of water, and then 660 grs. of iodide 
potassium dissolved in fgiv water gradually added, until no farther pre- 
cipitation took place. The resulting precipitate of red iodide of mer- 
cury was collected on a filter, washed with cold water, and then dried. 
It weighed 868 grs., being a difference of only a few grains from the 
estimated theoretical yield, and seemed to possess all the qualities of a 
good article. The manipulations necessary for the preparation of this 
salt were all conducted in a vessel of 8 ozs. capacity, and with the 
expenditure of about ten minutes' attention ; whereas, if the officinal 
process had been followed, a vessel at least five times as large would 
have been required, and considerably more time needed. Another ad- 
vantage can be also found in the fact that the process is considerably 
cheaper than that of the U. S. P. In practice, I have found it neces- 
sary to use a little more than the theoretical quantity of iodide potas- 
sium, in order to allow for moisture in the salt as well as to thorough- 
ly insure the decomposition of the mercuric nitrate. On the other 
hand, care must be taken not to add a large excess of iodide potassium, 
on account of the solubility of the mercuric iodide. For preparing the 
mercuric iodide, I would therefore propose the following formula : 


Mercury, . . • • 1000 grs. 

Nitric acid, . • • • 1700 grs. 

Iodide potassium, . . . 1662 grs. or q- s. 

Distilled water, . . • . q. s. 

(Instead of the mercury and nitric acid gv & 9ii of liq. hydrarg. nit. 

can be used.) 

Dissolve the mercury in the nitric acid by the aid of a little heat (in 
laro-e quantities this is not necessary, as the reaction between the acid 
and mercury generates sufficient heat), and dilute with an equal bulk of 
water. Then add the iodide potassium, dissolved in 8 fluidounces of 

Am Mar i 8 P 7 6 arm '} Presence of Tannin in Gentian Root. 117 

water, until no farther precipitation ensues, being careful towards the 
last to add the solution very gradually, so as to avoid dissolving the 
mercuric iodide in an excess of the liquid. Collect the precipitate on 
a filter, wash well with distilled water, drain and dry. 

The solution of mercuric nitrate also affords a very convenient way 
of preparing the yellow oxide of mercury, and I submit also a formula 
for its preparation. 

Hydrargyrum Oxidum Flar. 


Sol. mercuric nitrate (prepared by dissolving mercury in an ex- 
cess of nitric acid), . . any convenient quantity 
Liq. sodae, . . . . q. s. 

Dilute the solution of mercuric nitrate with an equal bulk of water, 
and add liq. sodae until in slight excess. Collect the yellow precip- 
itate, wash well and dry. Sol. soda is used here instead of sol. potassa, 
as directed by the " Pharmacopoeia," on account of its cheapness, there 
being no appreciable difference in the quality of the yellow oxide ob- 
tained from the two solutions. 

For these formulae I do not claim any special originality, but regard 
them only as affording, by the aid of a very common and easily-made 
preparation, a much more convenient and practicable method of pre- 
paring these mercurials than any other process of which I have knowl- 
edge. Their greatest merit lies in the fact that they can be prepared 
with much economy of both time and space, both important points to 
pharmaceutists whose facilities for manufacturing are of a rather limited 



[Read at the Pharmaceutical Meetings February i$tk, 1876.) 

The root of Gentiana lutea, owing to its importance as a medicine, 
has been frequently subjected to chemical analysis during the last sixty 
years, and none of the investigators have been able to prove the presence 
of tannin in it. The long list commences in 1 815, with Schrader 
(" Berl. Jahrb. f. Phar.," xvi), who is followed by Henry, and by Guille- 
min and Foecquemin in 18 18 ("Jour, de Phar.," v) ; in 1821 by Henry 
and Caventou {ibid., vii) ; in 1836 by Denis {ibid., 1836, January) ; 
in 1837 bv H. TrommsdorfF ("Ann. d. Phar.," xxi), and by Claude 

1 1 8 Presence of Tannin in Gentian Root. { Am £ l . r i8 P 7 6. arm ' 

Leconte ( u Jour. de Phar.," xxiii) ; in 1838 by Dulk ( tc Arch. d. Phar.,' , 
xv) ; in 1847. by Baumert ("Ann. d. Chem. u. Phar.," lxii) ; in 1861 
by H. Ludwig ("Arch. d. Phar./' clvii), and in 1862 by Kromayer 
(ibid., clx). To these investigations must be added the recent ones by 
Hlasiwetz and Habermann (" Buchn. N. Repert.," 1874, p. 631 ; 
"Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1875, p. 207). It is true that many of these 
analyses were undertaken with the principal object of isolating the 
bitter principle or the gentianic (gentisic) acid ; but it is hardly to be 
supposed that a principle like tannin, the presence of which is so 
readily proven, should have been overlooked. More particularly is 
this the case with the analyses of Henry and Caventou, Leconte and 
Dulk, the two former of which were undertaken for the purpose of 
ascertaining all the constituents, and that of Dulk verified the substan- 
tial correctness of the results of the former. 

The results obtained by these chemists agree perfectly well with the 
physiological effects observed by numerous physicians, and which may 
be summed up with the words of Pereira : " Gentian is very properly 
regarded as a pure or simple bitter ; that is, as being bitter, but without 
possessing either astringency or much aroma." Moreover, none of the 
works on Materia Medica, in the English, French and German lan- 
guages, which the writer had occasion to consult, mentions tannin or a 
similar compound in this root. 

In the face of these numerous investigations, it must appear rather 
startling to learn that Mr. E. L. Patch, in a paper recently read before 
the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, asserted that "he found tannin 
in the gentian, contrary to the usual statement of works on Materia 
Medica" ("Drug. Circ," 1876, p. 48). This assertion seems to be 
mainly based on " the incompatibility of the tincture of chloride of 
iron and the compound tincture of gentian," although it is stated that 
Mr. Patch exhibited numerous preparations of gentian in connection 
with his paper. Unfortunately, the gentleman seems to have over- 
looked the fact, that the tincture mentioned contains also orange peel, 
and that the white parenchyma of the latter is colored of a deep black 
on the addition of solution of any ferric salt, which coloration, accord- 
ing to Fliickiger and Hanbury (" Pharmacographia," pages 105, 113), 
is owing, "probably, to a kind of tannic matter." It will be observed 
that the authors mentioned are very guarded in their expression, not- 
withstanding the ink-black coloration produced by iron salts. 

^'&'S& m '} Presence of Tannin in Gentian Root. 119 

But what is the effect of ferric salts upon gentian ? The investiga- 
tions mentioned above have thrown considerable light on this point. 
Henry already noticed the dark color produced by ferric chloride with 
what he supposed to be the bitter principle, but which was subsequently 
proven to be merely the yellow coloring principle contained in the root. 
Baumert says that the concentrated alcoholic solution of pure gentianic 
(gentisic) acid produces with ferric chloride a red-brown precipitate, 
and Ludwig found that the aqueous solution of the extract contains a 
body 'which, under certain circumstances, imparts a dark-green fluores- 
cence. In these observations we have the key for the behavior of 
ferric salts with the preparations of gentian, which I shall endeavor to 
explain with the following experiments. 

Well-dried and bruised gentian root was nearly exhausted by cold 
water, first by percolation and subsequently by expression after mace- 
ration. The first portion of the percolate gelatinized on standing a 
day or two, in consequence of the separation of pectin compounds. 
This aqueous infusion is not disturbed by gelatin solution, a pretty sure 
evidence of the total absence of tannin ; in the course of a few hours, 
a scant light-colored precipitate made its appearance, which, after having 
been thoroughly washed with water is merely tinged light-brown by 
dilute ferric salts. The infusion, however, strikes with ferric chloride 
a dark reddish-brown color, which in reflected light shows a deep 
greenish tint ; no precipitate takes place, as the liquid remains perfectly 
transparent in thin layers, although a concentrated infusion apparently 
becomes opaque on the addition of the iron salt, but after water is 
added shows not the slightest sign of a precipitate, even on standing. 
If the infusion has been previously diluted with water, the addition of 
ferric chloride will scarcely darken it. 

Alcohol added to the cold infusion precipitates pectin compounds, 
albuminous and gummy matter, and the clear liquid behaves exactly as 
the infusion from which it had been made. The infusion preserved by 
alcohol was treated with a fragment of fresh hide for 24 hours ; the 
behavior of the liquid to ferric chloride showed no difference. The 
experiments detailed prove conclusively that the aqueous infusion of 
gentian does not contain any tannin. 

Gentain root, previously nearly exhausted with water, was now 
macerated, and then displaced with strong alcohol. The tincture thus 
obtained is of a bright yellow color, quite distinct from the yellowish- 

120 Presence of Tannin in Gentian Root. { Am 'J^ 7 t rm ' 

brown color of the infusion or tincture prepared directly from unex- 
hausted root. It gives, with ferric chloride, a deep brown-green color, 
and also a precipitate, if sufficiently concentrated ; on diluting it with 
water, the mixture turns muddy from the separation of resin and fat, 
its color becoming of a dirty green-brown ; if, instead of water, alcohol 
be added to the mixture, a perfect solution is obtained, having a brown 
color with a greenish tint. The tincture prepared from the nearly 
exhausted root is, therefore, likewise free from tannin. 

In order to further elucidate the subject, a portion of the tincture 
was evaporated, and the residue washed with cold water to remove the 
remaining bitter principle, gentiopicrin. The clear, yellow filtrate 
evidently contains gentianic (gentisic) acid in solution, it yields, with 
ferric chloride, a deep brown color, without any percepible green 
tint. Dilution of the mixture with water revealed the absence of a 

The yellow granular mass left, after washing the alcoholic extract 
with water, was washed with cold ether to remove adhering resin and 
fat ; on evaporation of the yellow etherial solution, a yellow amorphous 
mass was left, which, dissolved in a little alcohol, yields, with ferric 
chloride, a dark brown-green precipitate, the mixture becoming muddy 
on the addition of water, but perfectly transparent by alcohol. 

The portion left undissolved by ether, consisting of nearly pure 
gentianic (gentisic) acid, was recrystallized by hot alcohol ; but the 
quantity operated on being small, the acid was not obtained in an 
absolutely pure state. Its alcoholic solution behaved nearly like the 
solution of the etherial washings, except that the precipitate of the 
latter with ferric chloride, and its solution in alcohol, was of a more 
decided green color. 

If it is remembered that gentianic (gentisic) acid is slightly soluble 
in water, not freely in ether, but readily in alcohol, the dark coloration 
imparted to various simple preparations of gentian by ferric salts is 
easily explained, likewise the dark-colored precipitate occurring by the 
same agent with fluid extract of gentian ; and if it is remembered that 
alcohol takes up from gentian root also resin and fat, which are 
precipitated on the addition of water, the occurrence of a per- 
manent precipitate in the presence of iron apparently remaining on 
diluting the alcoholic liquid with water, will likewise become 

Am Mar Ur, I 8 P 7 6 arm "} Ready-Made Pills of Our Bay. \ 2 1 

In proximate analysis it is of the utmost importance not to place 
any reliance upon any single reaction, much less when the test 
is applied in such complex mixtures as infusions and tinctures must 
necessarily be. While it is true that tannins produce, with iron 
salts, blueish - black or greenish - black colorations or precipitates, 
according to the state of concentration, it must be borne in mind 
that there are numerous other compounds which produce somewhat 
similar reactions, without being in the least related to the interesting 
group of tannins. 



A paper bearing the above title appears in the late Proceedings of 
the American Pharmaceutical Association, purporting to emanate from 
the pen of Joseph P. Remington, Professor of Pharmacy in the 
Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. Any one reading it carefully will 
find that the written statements and tabulated experiments do not agree 
as to the awards of merit in his classification of the various ready-made 
pills of our day. He writes that his tabulated results show the un- 
coated pill to be the most soluble, next in order the sugar coated pill, 
then the compressed or lenticular pill, then the gelatin coated pill. 
Mr. Remington starts out by making up a special uncoated pill, using as 
an excipient glycerin in both cases, which is not a fair or just criterion 
of the uncoated ready-made pill of our day. It should have been the 
regular officinal ready-made pill of the shop, usually made in strict ac- 
cordance with the ingredients and excipients directed in the United 
States Pharmacopoeia, and kept on hand for immediate dispensing. Mr. 
Remington then prefers the sugar coated pill as second in point of 

If he will look over his experiments and reflect a moment, he will 
observe that he should have given the preference to the compressed 
pills, as it appears in his tables they were the only ones dissolved, all 
the others were only disintegrated, or as in the case of the cachets de 
pain the materials were only shaken out, (disintegration does not 
prove solubility), 1 and in the acidified solution of Pepsin the compressed 

1 We are informed by Professor Remington that the compressed quinia pill dis- 
solves gradually without becoming disintegrated 5 it, therefore, presents to the liquid 
of the stomach and intestinal canal a limited surface to act upon, while the uncoated 


Ready-Made Pills of Our Day. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Mar. 1876. 

pills were dissolved in the same time as the sugar coated pills. Again, 
the compressed compound cathartic pills assert their superiority in 
becoming disintegrated 15 minutes before the sugar coated pill. In the 
case of the uncoated compound cathartic pill, Mr. Remington uses 
the indefinite »and impractical expression of "gone in 15 minutes." 
This implies a perfect solution of the pill, and when we take the in- 
gredients into consideration, we know that they cannot be wholly dis- 
solved in a weak alkaline solution. Another important fact, which Mr. 
Remington has overlooked, is that a sugar coated pill must first be de- 
prived of its coating before the solvent reaches the pill itself, which he 
asserts is from 5 to 15 minutes. Two other points in this paper open 
to criticism are the shaking every 3 minutes, which in the case of the 
gelatin pills, occupied 18 and 24 hours. Query : How did Mr. Rem- 
ington manage to shake the pills every 3 minutes during the night ? 
Also, Mr. Remington neglects to state how he maintained a regular 
temperature of 8o° and 98 for that length of time. And in order to 
further confirm the idea that Mr. Remington really intended to endorse 
the compressed pills as superior to ail other ready-made pills of our 
day, he represents a machine in a wood-cut at the latter part of his 
paper, for making a pill that he has published as a third rate pill in 
point of solubility, which machine I find by tracing its history, is 
based on a machine found by Professor Remington among the stock 
which he purchased from the estate of the late A. Mosely, a 
graduate of our college, and his predecessor in business. Machines 
made after this model have been offered for sale by different parties, 
one of them by Messrs. H. C. Blair's Sons, styled the " Remington 
Pill Press." The machines, four of which I have experimented 
with, and find that they are not practically up to the standard for 
doing what they represent to do. A pill may be made by the machines 
with materials of a heavy or moist character, but not so readily with 
light dry substances, as I found that the machines required cleaning 
between every one or two pills made, with the chance of breaking 
them between the dies^ and in my judgment, endorsed by the 

and sugar coated quinia pills being disintegrated, present the quinia in the state of 
powder, and consequently with a very large surface, so that its chances of dissolving 
rapidly in the stomach, appear to be far better than those of the compressed pill. — 
Editor Amer. Jour. Phar. 

1 I have, however, seen an improvement in one of the machines made at Mr. 
Remington's suggestion, which obviates the difficulty mentioned, as far as I had 
time to determine. — S. C. 

Am Mar r z876 arm } Ready-Made Pills of Our Bay. 123 

experience of several pharmacists with whom I have conversed, that 
the waste of time and labor involved by their use, will ultimately 
consign them a place among the rubbish of drug stores. 

I have thus criticised this paper from the fact that I have been en- 
gaged on this subject for some time past, deeming it one of importance 
to the members of both professions and the community. The follow- 
ing table of experiments were made from the various pills taken from 
stock ort hand in my store, and were conducted conscientiously with 
a view of arriving at a true solution of which is the best ready-made 
form of pill for immediate dispensing by the retail pharmacist. 

The following list of pills embrace all the known standard ready- 
made pills of our day, viz. : The officinal ready-made pills ; the solu- 
ble pills from Schieffelin & Co., of New York ; the sugar coated pills 
from many well-known houses ; the gelatin coated pills from Keasbey 
& Mattison, of Philadelphia and from McKesson & Robbins, of New 
York ; the compressed pills from Jacob Dunton and John Wyeth & 
Bro. ; the medicated globules or pearls from E. Fougera & Co., of 
New York ; also the cachet de pain, a French wafer, first introduced 
into this city by L. Dursse, of Baltimore, and thence through myself 
to the medical profession of this citv. The points to be considered in 
such experiments, are the maintenance of a regular temperature, and to 
get a solution as nearly representing the gastric juice as possible, which, 
according to the latest authorities on physiology, consists of about 5 
parts acid to 15 parts of pepsin, with traces of the chlorides of sodium, 
potassium, calcium and ammonium ; also phosphates of lime, magnesia 
and iron, in 1,000 parts of liquid. In my experiments I used a hot 
water oven, in which heat was maintained at a regular desired tempera- 
ture, by means of a Bunsen gas regulator as long as required, day and 
night. The pills were placed in small cylinders of tin, inches in 
diameter by J inch deep, having gauze bottoms, and suspended in / 
tumblers holding 12 fluidounces. The solvents used were water kept 
at a steady temperature of ioo° Fahrenheit, and a mixture correspond 
ing to the gastric juice, as before described, and previously tested to 
prove its digestive power by its action upon albumen, also maintained 
at a temperature of ioo° Fahrenheit, with the following tabled results : 



Pills of Our Day. 

( Am Jour. Pharm. 
\ Mar. 1876. 

I found that all the pills described, with the exception of the Dunton 
compressed pill, contained excipients of some kind to keep them in pill 

The Wyeth compressed pill was submitted to same test as the Dun- 
ton pill, but required one-fourth longer time to dissolve, whilst the 
solution of the quinine pills was ' cloudy, and had a very perceptible 

Am 'M J a r Ur x8 P 7 6 arm } Ready-Made Pills of Our Day. 1 1 5 

odor of grease, evidencing the fact of the presence of some foreign 
matter in their composition. The objection that the pressure used in 
making a compressed pill renders it so compact and hard as to inter- 
fere with its solubility, was met by a microscopical examination, which 
shows that they are quite porous, which fact must practically aid in 
their solution or disintegration. The soluble pills, so-called, from 
Schieffelin & Co., of New York, are a handsome-looking pill, but are 
open to the same odjection as the gelatin coated pills, viz., irregularity 
in dissolving, requiring from 6 to 24 hours, swelling up in some in- 
stances as large as raisins, thereby materially interfering with the action 
of the solvent. The sugar-coated pills were taken from stock recently 
purchased from Messrs. Bullock & Crenshaw, W. R. Warner & Co. 
and Hance Bros. & White, all of this city. They required from 15 
to 60 minutes to remove the coating, with evidence, in the iodide of 
potassium pills, of the presence of gum tragacanth and extract of 
gentian as excipients, swelling up after five hours as large as hazel nuts. 
The pill proper was, in all casses, hard and brittle, which must neces- 
sarily happen on account of the heat employed in coating the pill. 
Hence is it practical to suppose a sugar-coated pill to be as readily dis- 
solved as one made without coating, with the ingredients merely pressed 
together without any adherent substance ? The globules or pearls from 
E. Fougera & Co., of New York, are gelatin capsules, with the in- 
gredients in a powdered form, free from excipients, and required from 30 
to 60 minutes to dissolve their coating. Their size is an objection, 
however, yet they include in their list liquids such as apiol, turpentine, 
ether, phosphorated oil, &c, and the pearls should be classified with 
Cachet de Pain, and not as pills. They are perfectly reliable, and 
worthy the attention of the profession. The Cachet de Pain is, no 
doubt, an elegant mode of giving medicine, yet it is already murmured 
around by patients that they make a bulky dose. 

The method of agitation also engaged my attention, as the one 
adopted by Mr. Jos. P. Remington to prove the solubility of the pills. 
I took four 6J oz. bottles, each containing 4 fluidounces of water at 

70 F. In each bottle I placed a 2 gr. sulphate of quinia pill one 

made with glycerin as an excipient, another B. & C.'s sugar coated 
another McK. & R's gelatin coated, another Dunton's compressed. 
The bottles were attached to the eccentric rod of an upright steam 
engine, and speeded up to 350 revolutions a minute, with the following 
results : The Dunton compressed was dissolved in five hours, the 


Iodo-Sulphate of Chinioidin. 

Am. Jour. Pharm . 
Mar. 1876. 

uncoated in seven hours, the sugar coated in eight hours, the gelatin 
coated in seven hours. I differ on this point also with Mr. Remington, 
as the digestive process of the stomach is not agitation, but more pro- 
perly a churning or a circulatory displacement process, quiet but con- 
tinuous in its mode of operation ; hence my plan of suspending the 
pills in a large bulk of fluid arid allowing the bulkier portion to be 
below the pills. Hence, after going carefully over the ground described, 
and as my tabled results will show, T find that in point of solubility the 
Dunton compressed pill surpasses all others. The second in point of 
solubility is the uncoated or officinal pill ; third, the sugar coated ; 
fourth, the gelatin coated. Although there is some difference between 
the two latter, yet they may be placed on the same footing, as the fact 
of their being coated excipient pills must create in the mind of any 
practical pharmacist or intelligent physician a doubt as to their more 
rapid solubility over a non-excipient or uncoated pill. 
Philadelphia, Feb. 14M, 1876. 



Since I applied Herapath's discovery 1 of the remarkable compound 
of quinia with iodine and sulphuric acid to the quantitative determina- 
tion of quinia in a mixture of Cinchona alkaloids, 2 it has often occurred 
to me that the use of an alcoholic solution of iodine has many incon- 
veniences, for it requires a great deal of practice to add the right 
quantity. A slight excess of iodine is necessary to precipitate all the 
quinia ; but if this excess is too great, a compound containing more 
iodine is formed, which is very soluble in alcohol. It appeared to me, 
therefore, desirable to abolish, if possible, the use of free iodine, and 
to obtain the same result by using a compound of iodine. For this 
purpose I tried the most soluble of the crystallizable iodo-sulphates 
described in Herapath's paper, viz., the iodo-sulphate of cinchonia. 
The alcoholic solution of this compound added to a solution of quinia 
in alcohol acidulated with sulphuric acid, really produces a precipitate 
of iodo-sulphate of quinia (herapathite), but the bulk of the reagent 
required to precipitate all the quinia was too great to answer my pur- 

1 " Pharmaceutical Journal," [1] vol. xi, p. 448, and vol. xii, p. 6. 

2 u Ibid," [3] vol. ii, p. 642. " Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1853, p. 137. 

Am Man'i8 7 h 6 ! rm '} Iodo-Sulphate of Chinioidin. 127 

pose of applying it to the quantitative determination of quinia. After 
some experiments with the iodo-sulphate of chinioidin (wrongly called 
amorphous quinia,) I found that this compound is perfectly adapted 
for the required purpose, as its solubility in cold alcohol is great enough 
to make a concentrated alcoholic solution containing 16 per cent, or 
even more of it. This reagent is made as follows : 

Two parts of sulphate of chinioidin, 1 are dissolved in 8 parts of 
water, containing 5 per cent, of sulphuric acid. To this clear solution, 
contained in a large capsule, a solution of one part of iodine and two 
parts of iodide of potassium in 100 parts of water, is slowly added under 
continuous stirring, so that no part of the solution of chinioidin comes 
into contact with an excess of iodine. By this addition, an orange- 
colored flocculent precipitate is formed of iodo-sulphate of chinioidin, 
which either spontaneously or by a slight elevation of temperature, col- 
lapses into a dark brown-red colored resinous substance, whilst the 
supernatant liquor becomes clear and slightly yellow-colored. This 
liquor is poured off, 2 and the resinous substance is washed by heating 
it on a water-bath with distilled water. After washing, the resinous 
substance is heated on the water-bath till all the water has been evap- 
orated. It is then soft and tenacious at the temperature of the water- 
bath, but becomes hard and brittle after cooling. One part of this 
substance is now heated with 6 parts of alcohol of 92 or 94 per cent, 
on a water-bath, and is thus dissolved, and the solution allowed to 
cool. In cooling, a part of the dissolved substance is separated. The 
clear dark-colored solution is evaporated on a water-bath, and the resi- 
due dissolved in 5 parts of cold alcohol. This second solution leaves 
a small part of insoluble substance. The clear dark colored solution 
obtained by the separation of this insoluble matter, either by decanta- 
tion or filtration, constitutes the reagent which I have now used since 
the beginning of 1875, under the name of iodo-sulphate of chinioidin, 
both for the qualitative and quantitative determination of crystallizable 

To determine the. quantity of quinia contained in the mixed alkaloids 

1 Identical with " Sulphate of Amorphous Quinia, prepared according to Dpt de 
Vrij's process, by Messrs. Howard & Sons, Stratford. 

2 To prevent the use of an excess of iodine, I have prescribed on purpose not 
enough iodine to precipitate all the chinioidin in the form of iodo-sulphate. There- 
fore this liquor contains still chinioidin which can be obtained in a very pure state, 
if a little sulphurous acid is added before precipitating the alkaloid by caustic soda. 


lodo-Sulphate of Chinioidin. 

J Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ Mar. 1876. 

obtained from a sample of cinchona bark, 1 part of the alkaloids is dis- 
solved in 20 parts of alcohol of 90 or 92 per cent., containing i'6 per 
cent. 1 of sulphuric acid, to obtain an alcoholic solution of the acid 
sulphates of the alkaloids. From this solution, the quinia is separated 
by adding carefully, by means of a pipette, the above-mentioned solu- 
tion of iodo-sulphate of chinioidin, as long as a dark brown red pre- 
cipitate of iodo-sulphate of quinia (herapathite) is formed. As soon as 
all the quinia has been precipitated, and a slight excess of the reagent 
has been added, the liquor acquires an intense yellow color. The 
beaker containing the liquor with the precipitate, is now covered by a 
watch glass and heated on a water-bath till the liquid begins to boil. 2 
After cooling, the beaker is weighed, to ascertain the amount of liquid, 
which is necessary in order to be able to apply later the above-men- 
tioned correction. For although the quinia-herapathite is very little 
soluble in alcohol, it is not insoluble, 3 and, therefore, a correction must 
be applied for the quantity which has been dissolved both by the 
alcohol used for the solution of the alkaloids, and the alcohol contained 
in the reagent. The liquor is now filtered, to collect the iodo-sulphate 
of quinia, on a small filter, where it is washed with a saturated solution 
of herapathite in alcohol. 4 After the washing has been completed, the 
weight of the funnel with the moist filter is taken, and the filter 
allowed to dry in the funnel. As soon as it is dry, the weight is taken 
again to ascertain the amount of solution of herapathite which remained 
in the filter, and which left the dissolved herapathite on the filter after 

1 This quantity is quite sufficient to transform the alkaloids into acid sulphates, 
and ought not to be increased, for an excess of acid would increase the solubility of 
the herapathite in alcohol. 

2 If during the addition of the reagent to the solution of the mixed alkaloids, the 
liquid is not continuously stirred, it may happen that, if cinchonidia is present in 
large proportion relatively to quinia, as in Indian red bark, an orange-colored 
gelatinous precipitate is formed of an iodo-sulphate of cinchonidia If this happens, 
the liquid must be heated till this gelatinous precipitate disappears, before adding 
more of the reagent to precipitate all the quinia. 

3 Alcohol of 92 per cent., saturated with herapathite at a temperature of 24*5° C. 
left by evaporation 0*133 gram of herapathite. 

4 For my bark analysis, I always keep a supply of this solution, made by putting 
an excess of herapathite dried at ioo° C. into alcohol of 92 per cent., and shaking 
from time to time. The temperature of the laboratory in which the analysis is 
made, is quite indifferent, provided that it is noted and does not change during the 
operation. It is clear that the amount of herapathite dissolved at that temperature 
in the alcohol must be ascertained, as this quantity varies with the temperature. 

*Sfc8 7 h 6! rm '} 'Iodo-Sulphate of Chinioidin. 129 

the evaporation of the alcohol. This amount is subtracted from the 
total amount of liquid, and, for the remaining, the correction is calcu- 
lated with reference to the temperature of the laboratory during the 
time of the analysis. The dry iodo-sulphate of quinia is taken from the 
filter and dried on a water-bath, in one of a couple of large watch- 
glasses closing tightly upon each other, so that the weight of the sub- 
stance contained in the glass may be taken without the access of the 
air. When, after repeatedly ascertaining the weight, it remains con- 
stant, this weight is noted down, and to it is added the product of the 
calculated correction. The sum of this addition is the total amount of 
iodo-sulphate of quinia obtained from the mixed alkaloids subjected to 
the operation, and from this weight the amount of crystallizable quinia 
can be calculated by the use of Hauers's formula, 2C 40 H 24 N 2 O 4 , 3(HO, 
S0 3 ), 3 I (old notation), which I have found to be correct. Accord- 
ing to this formula, I part of iodo-sulphate of quinia dried at ioo° C. 
represents 0*5509 part of anhydrous quinia or 07345 part of pure 
commercial disulphate of quinia. 1 

The accuracy of this determination* may be proved by the following 
examples : 

0*294 gram of anhydrous crystallized quinia, kindly presented to me 
by Dr. O. Hesse in October, 1873, g ave °'54 I g ra m of herapathite 
dried at 100° C. =0*298 gram of quinia. 

According to Hauers's formula, I ought to have obtained 0.5336 
gram of herapathite=o*294 gram of quinia. 

1*048 gram of bitartrate of quinia gave 1.224 g ram of herapathite= 
0,674 gram of quinia. 

According to the formula of the bitartrate C^H^N^C^, C 4 H 6 O s + 
Aq=492 ; 1*048 of bitartrate represent 0*69 of quinia, so that I ought 
to have obtained 1*255 g ram of herapathite. 

1 Although, as Mr. Umney stated at the Pharmaceutical meeting on Wednes- 
day, November 3, 1875, "manufacturers only believed in the crystallizable sulphate 
of quinia which they could see and weigh," I suppose they will equally be satisfied 
by seeing and weighing the quinia herapathite obtained by the analyst from a cer- 
tain amount of bark ; for, not only can this compound be easily distinguished from 
the similar compounds of the other Cinchona alkaloids, but by dissolving it in 
sulphurous acid and precipitating the solution by caustic soda, quinia is obtained, 
which may be easily transformed into crystallized sulphate. 


1 30 lodo-Sulfhate of Chinioidin. { Am £ r ur ^ 7 e arm ' 

Notwithstanding the different circumstances in which the reagent 
was applied, the results seem to me satisfactory. 

The two following experiments were made with pure quinia, dried 
at ioo° C, at which temperature it still retains water, under identical 
circumstances : 

1*0664 gram of hydrated quinia gave 1*7266 gram of herapathite= 
164*5 P er cent. 

1*055 gram of the same hydrated quinia gave 1*7343 gram of hera- 
pathite=i64*3 per cent. 

Although I feel convinced that this process of estimating the amount 
of quinia in a mixture of Cinchona alkaloids, is not one which, even in 
the hands of inexperienced persons, shall give accurate results in a short time, 
I have some hope that in the hands of experienced analysts, it may 
prove a satisfactory one, if, before applying it, they study, as I have 
done, the action of the reagent upon solution of 1 gram of quinia, 
quinidia, cinchonia and of cinchonidia, each of them separately in 20 
grams of the above-mentioned acidulated alcohol. If they do so, they 
will find that the iodo-sulphates of quinia and of quinidia, thus 
obtained, have an analogous composition, and are identical with the 
compounds described by Herapath, 1 whilst the iodo-sulphates of cin- 
chonia and cinchonidia have a different composition from the former, 
and both require more iodine to be transformed into the optical iodo- 
sulphates described by Herapath. In the meantime, they will find that 
of all these iodo-sulphates, that of quinia is the most insoluble in alcohol, 
as has been stated already by Herapath in the paper above quoted, and 
is therefore precipitated the first of all and alone by a judicious addition 
of the iodo sulphate of chinioidin. 

I do not in the least pretend to have exhausted the subject, but on 
the contrary, I hope that my paper may lead to a still better process. 
Thus, for instance, I feel some hope that it may be possible to apply 
the alcoholic solution of iodo-sulphate of chinioidin to volumetric 
analysis, and, therefore, I presented a specimen of it to Mr. Sutton, 
the author of the valuable work " On Volumetric Analysis," when he 
was so kind as to call upon me at the Hague last summer. — The Phar. 
Jour, and Trans., December 11, 1875. 

1 " Proceedings of" the Royal Society," vol. ix, p. 10. 

Am Ma?. r i876. arm '} Gleanings from Foreign Journals. 131 



Preparation of pure Iodide of Potassium. — If an aqueous solution of potassium 
iodide, containing iodate, is treated with sulphuretted hydrogen, the iodate is 
reduced, some sulphuric acid being formed at the same time, so that the iodide may- 
contain 1 to 2 per cent, of sulphate, which may be decomposed by barium iodide. 
A simpler and more interesting method of purification consists, according to G. 
Pellagri, in shaking a warm solution of the impure iodide with iron filings, which 
produces complete reduction of the iodate, no iron being dissolved, nor is iodine 
found in the ferric oxide formed. In a concentrated solution, the ferric oxide will 
ultimately exert an oxidizing influence upon the iodide, and the complete reduction 
of the iodate is only possible if the liquid is filtered and repeatedly treated with 
fresh iron filings. Complete reduction of the iodate is effected in the cold by 
immersing in the liquid an iron and a copper plate, and forming them into a 
galvanic element by uniting them, outside of the liquid, with a wire ; the iron only 
becomes oxidized, but no loss of iodine or contamination with iron or copper takes 
place. Potassium bromate is likewise promptly reduced by the iron-copper couple, 
but the chlorate is but incompletely acted upon. 

Powdered zinc acts, at first, energetically upon potassium iodate, but does not 
effect complete reduction — Schiveiz. Woch.f. Ph. 1875, No 50, from Ber. Chem. Ges. 

The De<vorati-ve Capsules, noticed on page 31 of our January number, appear to 
be made principally of gelatin. In a warm place, or if handled with moist fingers, 
they readily become adhesive and lose their gloss, at least in the places touched. 
They are folded neatly with difficulty only, and are, for the apothecary, very incon- 
venient, much more so than the wafer capsules, which are readily closed with a very 
simple apparatus. Another disadvantage of the new capsules is their unsightly 
appearance, due to their greyish color. — Ibid., No. 51. 

Iodinized Cotton. — Cotton, if dipped into a concentrated solution of iodine in 
ether or carbon bisulphide, retains, after drying, only traces, but no definite amount 
of iodine. Mehu impregnates cotton with 5 or 10 per cent, of iodine, by sprinkling 
it over layers of cotton, contained in a bottle, which is then warmed in a horizontal 
position in a sand or water bath. As soon as the warm air has been expelled, the 
bottle is tightly closed ; the vapors of iodine penetrate the fibres and color the 
cotton yellow, the color gradually becoming deeper, finally resembling roasted 
coffee, when the operation, which requires about two hours, is finished. — Zeitschr. 
Oesterr. Apoth. Ver., 1876, No. 3, from Jour, de Phar. et de Chim. 

Examination of Volatile Oil of Mustard. — Hager observes that the solubility of 
this oil, in water, is variable ; old oil required only 120, fresh oil about 230 parts of 
water of medium temperature for solution. Agitated with three times its volume 
of concentrated sulphuric acid, the mixture remains clear and becomes thick like 
syrup, after 12 hours, or is converted into a crystalline mass. — Phar. Cent. Halle, 
1875, No - 43- 

Elisa Galeers liquid for promoting the growth of the hair is a filtered mixture of 
15 grams ammonia water, 20 grm. glycerin, 50 grm. alcohol, 10 drops each of the 
oils of rue, lavender and bergamot, and 200 grms. of water. — Ibid. 

13 2 Gleanings from Foreign Journals. { Am 'li*l'S%£ m ~ 

Insoluble Cement for Glass is obtained, according to Prof. H. Schwarz, by dissolv- 
ing one part of bichromate of potassium for every 5 parts of gelatin, or glue, in a 
solution containing from 5 to 10 percent, of the latter. After having been applied to- 
the glass, the cement, on exposure to the sunlight, loses its property of swelling and 
dissolving in water, in consequence of the partial reduction of chromic acid. — 
Ibid., No. 45. 

Estimation of Vanillin in Vanilla. — F. Tiemann and W. Haarmann exhaust finely 
cut vanilla with ether, the solution is somewhat concentrated by evaporation, and 
then repeatedly agitated with two portions of a mixture consisting of equal volumes 
of water and concentrated solution of sodium bisulphite. The mixed aqueous- 
solutions, containing the vanillin, are treated with some sulphuric acid, the liberated 
sulphorous acid is expelled by a moderate heat, and the vanillin extracted by agita- 
tion with ether. On the evaporation of the ether, and drying over sulphuric acid ? , 
pure vanillin is left behind. 

The authors obtained, by this method, from Mexican vanilla 1*69, from Bourbon 
vanilla 1*91 and 2-48, and from Java vanilla 2*75 per cent, of vanillin, which, in 
the two last named varieties, is associated with an oil of a disagreeable odor,, 
whereby its flavor is modified. — Ibid., No. 47, from Ber. Chem. Ges. 

Soluble Blood Powder is obtained, according to G. LeBon, by evaporating the blood 
under decreased pressure and at a temperature not exceeding that of the body. The 
author submitted a sample, 18 months old, to the Paris Academy. By agitation 
with water it was, in a few minutes, converted into a fine red solution, possessing 
all the properties of defibrinated blood, showing the same behavior in the spectro- 
scope and coagulating on boiling. It is soluble in an acidulated solution of pepsin,, 
and is recommended as very nourishing. — Chem. Centralbl., 1875, No, 51, from 
Compt. rend.., lxxxi. 

A good Copying Ink jrom Extract of Logwood is obtained by treating 250 grams of 
coarsely powdered American extract of logwood in a suitable bottle, with 
3 kilos distilled water. When this is completely saturated with the soluble coloring 
matters, say in about one or two weeks, the clear solution is carefully decanted 
from the sediment, about 20 grams of acetate of manganese, dissolved in a little 
water, are added to the liquid, the whole is well mixed, and solution of acetate of 
iron carefully dropped in, until a deep violet-blue color is obtained. It is advisable 
to set the mixture aside for a few days to ascertain the change of color produced. 
The ink must be protected from the influence of the sunlight, and instead of gum 
arabic, solution of dextrin or sugar is preferably added to it. — Ibid., No. 52, from 
Ind. BL, xii 

Solubility of Oils in Glacial Acetic Acid. — Mr. Barnes' experiments on this 
subject (see page 29 of January number), were made with an acid solid at 48 F. 
Mr. W. H. Symons, using acetic acid, remaining solid up to 6o° F., found that one 
volume of it will dissolve in 4 vols, of almond, olive, cod liver and 'linseed oil, and 
mix in all proportions with the oils of turpentine and lemon. He also gives the 
following formulas for 

Linimentum Terebinthina Aceticum : oil of turpentine, 4 fluidounces $ glacial 
acetic acid, solid at 6o° F., 1 fluidounce, and camphor liniment, 4 fluidounces. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 1 
Mar. 1876. j 

V arieties. 


The following furnishes a liniment which is miscible with spirit in the proportion 
of one to seven, and with oils in any proportion, and which retains its transparency 
at a temperature considerably below the freezing point of water: camphor, 240 
grains; oil of turpentine, 2 fluidounces ; dissolve, filter and add castor oil, 2 
fluidounces, and glacial acetic acid, solid at 6o° F., 4 fluidrachms. — Pharm. Jour, 
and Trans.) 1875, Oct. 

Ammoniacum, according to Prof. W. Dymock, is received, at Bombay, in bales 
■containing all parts of the plant, broken up and encrusted with the gum resin, 
which appears to exude from every part, even the fruit being coated with it, and to 
be collected after the plant his matured its fruit. In Bombay it is picked and 
usually sorted into three qualities, large, middle-sized and small tears, the latter 
often containing dirt and other refuse. If kept during the monsoon, the tears get 
soft and unite into a lump. 

Dorema root is an article of commerce in Bombay, being imported from Persia 
under the name of Boi, and used in the Parsee fire temples as an incense. It has a 
thin, papery bark, like sumbul root, but is compact and has a resinous section, its 
texture becoming loose and spongy by age and the ravages of insects. Some years 
ago it was sent to Europe as Bombay sumbul, after having been cut up and 
impregnated with musk. — Ibid., Oct. 23. 

Tellurium a probable impurity in bismuth salts. — Mr. Charles Ekin, having called 
attention to the intolerable smell of garlic imparted to the breath of patients, after 
having taken a simple bismuth mixture, publishes extracts from some letters, show- 
ing that similar observations have been made by others. Mr. Geo. Brownen 
attributes this effect to the presence of tellurium, and both gentlemen are now 
•engaged in further investigating this subject. — Ibid., Dec. 25. 


Balsam Peru Adulterated with Alcohol. — A. Gavalowski recommends 
the following test as being easier of execution and as reliable as the distillation 
test: Add a few drops of the balsam to a solution of potassium bichromate in a 
test-tube, and then add concentrated sulphuric acid. In the presence of alcohol 
aldehyd will be formed, the smell of which (somewhat similar to that of rotten 
apples) will be distinctly perceived, since it quite covers that of the balsam itself. 
Even mere traces of alcohol are said to be recognizable. — Pharm. Ceniralh. in Ny 
pharm. Tid., 1875, P- 345- H. W. 

Mistura Glycyrrhiz^e Composita — A. F. W. Neynaber proposes in the 
" Druggists' Circular " for February, the following modification of the officinal 
formula : 

"Take half a troyounce of best Calabria liquorice, cut it into slices about J inch 
thick, introduce it into a glass percolator or funnel, using cotton and linen at the 
bottom and short straw as a layer between the liquorice, and having closed the out- 

T 34 


Am. Jour. Pharm, 
Mar. 1876. 

let with a cork, provided with a little notch on the tapered end (if the apparatus has 
no stop-cock), pour upon it 12 fluidounces of cold distilled water, set it aside for 
24 hours, then loosen the cork so as to allow the liquid to fall in drops, and let it 
percolate through, adding water in sufficient quantity until 13 fluidounces have been 
obtained. To this add half a troy ounce of gum arabic, bruised, stir occasionally., 
and when it has dissolved, add half a troy ounce of sugar 5 stir, heat the mixture to 
the boiling point, strain, and allow it to cool off, adding, if necessary, distilled water 
to make it weigh 1 3 J troyounces. To this perfectly clear liquid add camphorated 
tincture of opium, 2 fluidounces, wine of antimony, 1 fluidounce, spirit of nitrous 
ether, ^ fluidounce, and mix. 

" By this process starch and other impurities will be left behind in the funnel or 
percolator, the mass retaining almost its original shape (being merely a skeleton)., 
while the liquoiice will be exhausted." 

It will be observed that this is essentially the same formula suggested by Mr. 
Wilder on page 97 of our last volume, differing mainly in the recommendation to 
boil the solution of extract, gum and sugar. 

Lactopeptin. — The following formula for this preparation is copied from the 
" Oil, Paint and Drug Reporter,"" of January 26th : 

Sugar of milk, . . . .20 ounces 

Pepsin, pure, ... 4 ounces 

Paucreatin, pure, . . . .3 ounces 

Ptyalin or diastase, ... 1 drachm 

Lactic acid, . . . 2^ fl. drachms 

Hydrochloric acid, . . zj fl. drachms 
Powder and mix. 

Quinetum. — A preparation of the whole alkaloids, separated from East India 
red bark, has been used for some time in the Indian hospitals, as well as in private 
practice, with great success. The concurrent testimony of medical men in our In- 
dian possessions is to the effect that quinia is not so greatly superior to the whole 
alkaloids as to make it worth while to separate the sulphate in its pure state. Mr. 
Thomas Whiffen, of the Quinine Works, Battersea, now offers to the profession a 
similar preparation, which he calls quinetum. It is in the form of a fine granular 
non-adherent powder of a pale buff color. The proportions of the various alkaloids 
present will, of necessity, vary with the sample of bark used, but we think not so- 
much as to be of moment therapeutically. Sulphate of quinetum is a white crystal- 
line body with a faint pink tinge, greatly resembling sulphate of quinia ; and we 
are informed that the preparation can be supplied to the profession at about one- 
half of the cost of quinine. — Medical Neavs, Jan., 1876, from Brit. Med- Journ.y. 
Nov. 27, 1875. 

Thermic Researches on Phosphoric Acid. By MM. Berthelot and Louguin- 
ine. — M. Thomsen, having repeated the experiments of Graham in 1869 (" Pog- 
gendorfPs Annalen," cxl, 90 and 94), concluded that phosphoric acid was not a 
true tribasic acid, but rather a bibasic and triatomic. The authors, having re-ex- 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
Mar. 1876. J 


l 3S 

amined this subject, conclude that the three equivalents of" base successively united 
with phosphoric acid are combined in different manners, the first being comparable 
to the base of the nitrates and chlorates, the second to that of the carbonates and 
borates, and the third to the base of the alkaline alcoholates. — Chem.. Nevus, Dec. 
3i, 1875. 

Constitution of the Phosphates. By MM. Berthelot and Louguinine. — In 
this memoir the authors examine the formation of an insoluble phosphate, that of 
baryta ; they undertake an alkalimetrical study of phosphoric acid ; and, finally, 
they seek to define the displacements and reciprocal distribution of an alkaline base 
among phosphoric acid and the nitric, hydrochloric and acetic acids. They con- 
clude that phosphoric acid is not a tribasic acid of the same kind as citric acid, as 
the third equivalent of a soluble base is separated from phosphoric acid by the 
feeblest actions, and even by dilution. With ammonia it happens that the third 
basic equivalent does not combine with phosphoric acid, or if it combines at first it 
does not remain definitely united to the acid, but is gradually separated spontane- 
ously and completely. Neither is phosphoric acid a bibasic acid in the same sense 
as are the sulphuric, oxalic or tartaric acids. The second base, as alkalimetrical 
operations show, is not neutralized by phosphoric acid, and is entirely separated 
by the hydrochloric and nitric acids, and gives indications of division even with 
acetic acid. In short, the three equivalents of base united in the phosphates con- 
sidered as normal, are combined in different and unequal manners. Phosphoric 
acid must be regarded as a monobasic acid of a mixed function. — Chem. Nevus., Jan. 
7, from Compt. Rend. 


Quicksilver. - 

-Mr. J. B. Randol, General Manager 

, gives the pro- 

duction of the 

New Almaden 

mine for th 

e year 1875, in flasks of 7 

6\ lbs. each, as 

ollows : 































The total product of the mine for 1874 was 9,084 flasks, making the increase 
this year 4,564 flasks, or nearly 50 per cent. — Scientific American, Feb. 26, 1876. 

Constituents of Wood-tar Creasote. By Ferd. Tiemann and Benno Men- 
delsohn. — The portion of Rhenish wood- tar creasote boiling at 200 — 230 , was 
dissolved in ether and the solution agitated with potash. The aqueous liquid, after 
separation from the ether, was acidified, and the oil thereby liberated was separated 
by fractional distillation into two portions boiling at 195 — 212 and 217 — 226° 
respectively. The latter consisted of phlorol and creosol. 

Methylcreosol {Dimethylhomopyrocatechin). — This body was obtained thus: The 

i 3 6 

V arieties. 

(Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ Mar. 1876. 

foregoing mixture of phlorol and creosol, dissolved in alcohol and mixed with a 
slight excess of potash, was evaporated till it began to crystallize, and the crude 
creosol-potassium salt thereby formed was dissolved in methyl alcohol and boiled 
with excess of methyl iodide. The product was a dense oily body, distilling for the 
most part at 214 — 21 8°. 

Methylcreosol is a transparent, heavy liquid, of not unpleasant odor when pure, 
insoluble in water and dilute alkalies, but easily soluble in alcohol and ether. 

Dimethjlprotocatechuic Acid. — Methylcreosol was oxidized by heating it with a 
dilute solution of potassium permanganate. The product was an acid, crystallizing 
in long prisms, dissolving sparingly in water and freely in alcohol and ether, melting 
at 1 74°, and having the composition of dimethoxybenzoic acid. By gentle fusion 
with potassium hydrate it was converted into pyrocatechuic acid. This decompo- 
sition and its melting point characterize the body as dimethylprotocatechuic acid. 

Creosol is therefore a derivative of protocatechuic acid, and must be regarded as 
methylated methylpyrocitechin or homoguaiacol. 

Indifferent Oils of Wood-tar Creasote. — The etherial solution above mentioned 
contained an oil boiling at 2 14 — 218 , which was separated by fractional distilla- 
tion. This body yielded by oxidation dimethylpyrocatechuic acid, and therefore 
consisted of methylcreosol or dimethylhomopyrocatechin. Other oils present in the 
etherial solution are being examined by the authors. — Journ. Chem. Soc, [Lond.], 
Jan., 1876, from Deut. Chem. Ges. Ber., viii, 11 36-1 139. 

Reactions of Saccharine Matters. By M. Vidau. — A mixture of equal 
parts of commercial hydrochloric acid and of a fatty oil, but especially of oil of 
sesame, is a very delicate test for sugar, glucose, levulose, honey, &c. The oil and 
acid are shaken together for some minutes, and the mixture is heated until the acid 
liquid begins to boil, then the acid is allowed to subside and its colo.r is observed. 
When oil of sesame is used, the subsequent addition of one-tenth of a milligram of 
inverted sugar suffices to produce a characteristic rose color. The reaction is dis- 
tinct with a liquid containing one 20,000th of inverted sugar, and detects a milligram 
of that substance when dissolved in a cubic centimeter of normal urine. — Ibid., from 
J. Pharm. Chim., [4], xxii, 33. 

A New Preparation of Santonin. — Albuminated sodium santonate has 
recently been much recommended as an anthelmintic. It is prepared by gently 
heating in a porcelain dish a mixture of four parts of sodium bicarbonate, one part 
of santonin and two parts of dried, soluble egg or blood albumen with a small 
quantity of water, until a solution is effected 5 this is evaporated to dryness and 
subsequently redissolved in a sufficient quantity of warm water 5 the filtered solu- 
tion is evaporated, at a gentle heat, to dryness. The remaining albuminated sodium 
santonate forms colorless, shining scales, readily soluble in water, rendering an alka- 
line solution which, upon addition of acids, separates santonin with the evolution of 
carbonic acid from an excess of sodium carbonate. — Med. and Surg. Reporter, Feb. 
19, 1876. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Mar. 1876. 



Pharmacopceia of the Philadelph 
Linimentum Terebinthina Compositum. 


Olei terebinthinas, 
Aquas ammoniae fortioris, ad f 3 i 
Linimenti saponis, f^iv 
Fiat linimentum. 

Liquor Bromini. 

Bromini, ,^1 
Aquae, f^ii 
Potassii bromidi, q.s. ut fiat solutio. 
Signa — For physicians 1 use only. 

Liquor Plumbi Subacetatis cum Opii. 
(Leadwater and Laudanum.) 


Tincturae opii, fjii 
Liquris plumbi subacetatis diluti, 
q. s. ad Oii 


Mistura Antirheumatic a 

f §vi 

Potassii nitratis, 
Vini colchici radicis, 
Spiritus astheris nitrosi, 
Syrupi guaiaci, 
Olei gaultheriae, 
Aquas, q. s. ad 
Misce. Signa — Dose, a tablespoonful 
every two hours. 

Mistura Arsenicalis Composita. 


Liquoris arsenici chloridi, f§ss 
Tincturas ferri chloridi, f^iss 
Cinchonias sulphatis, 3'u 
Strychniae sulphatis, gr. ii 


Aquas, da q. s. ad f^vi 

Fiat mistura Signa — Dose, a teaspoon- 

Mistura Astringens . 


Acidi sulphurici aromatici, f^ii 
Extracti hasmatoxyli, gii 
Tincturas opii camphoratas Qjss 
Syrupi zingiberis, q. s. ad f'^vi 
Misce secundem artem. Signa — Dose, 
a tablespoonful. 

Mistura Cosmetica. 
(GoddarcTs Cosmetic Lotion.) 


Tincturas benzoini, f^ii 
Hydrargyri chloridi corrosivi, gr. vi 
Aquas rosas, fjvi 
Fiat mistura. 

ia Hospital. (Concluded.) — 

Mistura Creta Composita. 


Tincturas catechu, 
Tincturas opii camphoratas, ad f3vd 
Acidi carbolici, gtt. xii 

Mistura cretas, q. s. ad f^vi 

Misce secundum artem. Signa — Dose, 
a tablespoonful. 

Mistura Ferri Chloridi Composita. 
[Bashanis Mixture.) 


Liquoris ammonii acetatis, f*3 i ii 
Tincturas ferri chloridi, f^iiss 
Acidi acetici diluti, fgi 
Curacoa vel alcohol, fgii 

Aquas, «a q. s. ad f^vi 

Fiat mistura. Signa — Dose, a table- 

Mistura Ferri cum £>uinia!. 


Quinias sulphatis, £i 
Acidi phosphorici diluti, q. s. 

Ferri pyrophosphatis, ^ss 
Mistura aromaticas, q. s. ad f^xxx 
Misce secundum artem. Signa — Dose, 
a tablespoonful, containing 1 gr. of 
quinia and 4 grs. of iron. 

Mistura Soda. 
{Soda Mint.) 


Sodii bicarbonatis, gii 
Spiritus ammonii aromatici, gtt. 


Aquas menthas viridis, fjfviii 
Misce. Signa — Dose, one or two table- 
spoonfuls three times a day. 
Mistura Soda Composita. 


Sodii bicarbonatis, gii 
Creasoti, gtt. xii 

Syrupi acacias, f^ii 
Spiritus lavandulas compositi, f^iss 
Aquas, q. s. ad f^vi 

Fiat mistura. Signa — Dose, tablespoon- 
ful two hours after meals. 

Mistura Zollickofferi. 
( Zollickoffers Mixture.) 


Potassii iodidi, 

Pulveris guaiaci resinae, da ^iiss 
Vini colchici radicis, £3 iss 

Aquas cinnamomi, 
Syrupi, da. q. s. ad Oi 

Fiat mistura. Signa — Dose, a table- 


Am. Jour. Pharm. 

Mar. 1876. 



Chloroformi, fgss 

Spiritus aetheris sulphurici, f^iss 

Olei menthae piperitae, gtt. viii 

Oleoresinae capsici, gtt. ii 

Extracti cannabis indicae, gr. vi 

Morphiae muriatis, gr. xvi 

Acidi hydrocyanici diluti, mjxv 

Acidi hydrochlorici diluti, fgi 

Mellis, cm q. s. ad 15 iv 

Fiat mistura secundum artem. Signa — 
Dose, 1 <5 to 20 drops. 

Pilulae Aloes Composite. 

Pulveris Aloes Socotrinae, 5SS 
Ferri sulphatis exsiccatae, 
Terebinthinae albae, ad 

Misce et fiant pilulae cxx. 

Signa — Each pill contains 2 grs. of 

aloes and one gr. each of iron sulphate 

and turpentine. 

Pilulae Antineuralgicae. 

Acidi arseniosi, gr. iv 

Strychnia? sulphatis, gr. iii 

Extracti belladonna?, gr. xxiv 

Cinchoniae sulphatis, ^iii 
Pilulas ferri carbonatis, ~Jv 

Misce, et fiant pilulae cxx. 

Signa — Each pill contains i-3oth gr. 

of arsenic, i-4oth gr. of strychnia, i~5th 

gr. of belladonna, gr. of cinchonia, 

and i\ gr. of Vallet's mass. 


Pilulae Cinchonia et Arsenici. 

Cinchoniae sulphatis, 
Ferri redacti, ad ^ss 

Extracti nucis vomicae, gr. xxx 
Acidi arseniosi, gr. vi 

Misce, et fiant pilulae cxx. 

Signa — Each pill contains i-2oth gr. 
of arsenic, \ gr. of nux vomica, and 2 
grs. each of iron and cinchonia. 

Pilule Colocynthidis cum Belladonna. 


Extracti belladonnas, gr. xv 

Extracti colocynthidis compositi, 
Pulveris aloes socotrinae, da £iii 
Olei anisi, gtt. xxx 

Misce, et fiant pilulae cxx. 

Signa — Each pill contains §■ gr. of 

belladonna, and 1^ grs. each of aloes 

and colocynth. 


Pilulce Cinchonia Composite. 

Cinchoniae sulphatis, 
Ferri redacti, da ^ss 

Extracti nucis vomicae, gr. xxx 
Misce, et fiant pilulae cxx. 
Signa — Each pill contains \ gr. of nux 
vomica and 2 grs. each of iron and 


Pilula Opii cum Plumbi Acetate. 

Pulveris opii, gr. xl 

Plumbi acetatis, §ss 
Misce, et fiant pilulae cxx. Signa — Each 
pill contains ^ gr. of opium, and 2 grs. 
of acetate of lead. 


Pilulae Podophylli Composite. 

Resinae podophylli, gr. xx 

Extracti colocynthidis compositi, 
Extracti hyoscyami, da Z'n 

Misce, et fiant pilulae cxx. 
Signa — Each pill contains i-6th gr. po- 
dophyllin, and 1 gr. each of colocynth 
and hyoscyamus. 

Pilulae Rhei et Gentianc 


Pulveris rhei, ^ss 

Extracti gentianae, 

Extracti hvoscyami, da gii 

Misce, et fiant pilulae cxx. Signa — Each 
pill contains 2 grs. of rhubarb, and 
1 gr. each of gentian and hyoscyamus. 


Pul<vis Glycyrrhizae Compositus. 

Pulveris sennae, 

Pulveris glycyrrhizae radicis, da !§vi 
Pulveris foeniculi, 

Sulphuris loti, * da %in 

Sacchari albi, ^xviii 
Misce. Signa — Dose, a teaspoonful at 

Am Ma" r 'i876. rm '} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 139 


Pul<vis Soda Compositus. 

Bismuthi subnitratis, gr. v 

Sodii bicarbonatis, 
Pulveris zingiberis, 
Pulvcris calumbas, aa gr. iiss 


Syrupus Chlorali. 


Tinctura Aromatica , 

Chloralis hydratis, 
Tinctura? cardamomi, 

Aquae cinnamomi, 
Misce. Signa. — A teaspoonful contains 
10 grs. of chloral. 

Syrupus Guaiaci. 


fa iv 

ad Oi 



Pulveris guaiaci resinae, 
Liquor is potassas, f§ss 
Sacchari albi, fbi, (avoird.) 

Aquas, f§ viii 

Fiat syrupus. Signa — Dose, a teaspoon- 
ful, containing 5 grs. of guaiacum. 

Syrupus Pectoralis. 


Ammonii chloridi, ^ss 
Syrupi senegas, r^i 
Misturas glycyrrhizae compositae, q s. 

[ad f^viii 

Misce. Signa — Dose, a dessert-spoonful. 
Syrupus Potassii Iodidi. 


Potassii iodidi, ^i 
Syrupi sarsaparillas compositi, q. s. 


Misce. Signa — Dose, a dessert-spoonful, 
containing 20 grs. of iodide. 
Syrupus Potassii Iodidi Compositus. 


gr. 11 

Hydrargyri chloridi corrosivi, 
Potassii iodidi, £i 
Syrupi sarsaparillas compositi, q. s. 

[ad fSvi 

Misce. Signa — Dose, a dessert -spoonful, 
containing 1-12 gr. of mercury, and 
20 grs. of potassium iodide. 


Coriandri fructus, ^ii 
Angelicas fructus, ^iiss 
Glycerinas, f^v 
Syrupi, fjvi 
Alcoholis diluti, q. s. ut riant tinc- 
tura, Oii 
Signa — A pleasant vehicle for adminis- 
tering nauseous remedies. 


Tinctura Ferri Composita. 

Cinchonias sulphatis, 
Strychnia? sulphatis, 
Tincturas ferri chloridi, 

;r. 11 



Aquae, aa q. s. ad f^viii 

Misce secundum artem. Signa — Dose, 
a teaspoonful 3 times a day. 


Tinctura Saponis Viridis cum Pice. 

Picis liquidae, 
Saponis viridis, 
Spiritus methylici,, 
Misce cum leni colore. 

aa £1 


Tinctura Styptica. 

Potassii carbonatis, 31 

Saponis, gii 

Alcoholis, f§iv 
Fiat mistura secundum artem. 


Unguentum Plumbi Oxidi. 

Emplastri plumbi, 
Olei olivas, 
Misce cum leni calore. 



Unguentum Zinci Oxidi Benzoatum. 

Zinci oxidi, 
Tincturas benzoini, 
Fiat unguentum. 


gtt. xl 



The meeting was called to order at 8.15 P. M. The President and Registrar being 
absent, their offices were filled by the election of Mr. A. P. Brown and Richard V. 
Mattison to their respective positions. 

14-0 Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. { Am '^'J^ m - 

The minutes of the previous meeting were read, corrected and approved, the 
correction being that the glycerin dropper, exhibited at our last meeting, was not 
the invention of Mr. Bowman, but of Mr. H. W. Wharton, of Nashville, Tenn. 

(See p. 99). 

Prof. J. M. Maisch presented, from the British Pharmaceutical Conference, 
*' The Year Book of Pharmacy," and also a pamphlet, by Prof. Mark W. Har- 
rington, of the University of Michigan, on " The microscopic examination of 
crude drugs," which were accepted with the thanks of the meeting. 

Prof. Maisch then presented a specimen of nut galls, forwarded from Texas, by 
Mr. Vcelcker, of New Braunfels. They resemble, in structure, Aleppo nut galls, 
differing, however, in being lighter in color, having a smoother surface and contain- 
ing less tannin. 

Prof. Maisch also presented a handsome specimen of monobromated camphor, 
prepared by Mr. T. C. Linthicum, a member of the present class. 

Mr. Morris, of Edw'd S. Morris & Co., was then introduced, and presented 
specimens of palm nuts, from which palm oil is obtained 5 also, palm oil, made from 
the pulp around the kernel, of a reddish orange color, and also a white oil, 
obtained from the kernels themselves. A specimen of palm soap, made in 
Liberia, from the fresh oil, by this firm, was then exhibited, and specimens of coffee, 
the entire fruit, from Liberia and Brazil, donated to the cabinet. 

Mr. Morris then spoke of the manufacture of indigo, as prepared by his firm j 
instead of exposing the juice to the air, as usually practiced, they force air, by a 
steam pump, directly into the expressed juice of the plants, thus allowing oxidation 
to proceed with great rapidity, with the consequent great saving of time and labor, 
the granulated precipitate of indigo is then spread upon trays, and dried by means 
of hot air. 

Mr. Trimble read a paper on " The presence of ammonium in phosphoric acid," 
prepared by Prof. Markoe's process, (seep. 113), the conclusions of the writer 
being that the amount of ammonia formed is so small as to be of no practical 
importance. Some remarks followed, in which Prof. Markoe's process was warmly 
commended, no objection, however, being found to the first process of the 

Mr. Chas. L. Mitchell read a paper on the preparation of the red iodide and yellow 
oxide of Mercury (see p. 115), and exhibited specimens prepared by the processes 
recommended. Prof, Maisch said that in case of the mercuric iodide, the use of 
mercuric nitrate had been objected to, owing to the free nitric acid necessary to 
keep the nitrate in solution, tending to liberate iodine ; Mr. Mitchell's manipula- 
tion, however, seems to obviate this difficulty, the specimen exhibited appearing to 
be unobjectionable. 

Prof. Maisch then read an interesting and valuable paper on "The asserted 
presence of tannin in gentian root," clearly showing the absence of tannic acid in 
this drug (seep. 117). The infusion is not at once precipitated by gelatin, and 
yields, with a chemically neutral solution of ferric chloride, a blackish color, due to 
gentisic acid, and to a body producing a green fluorescence, the color being, of 
course, destroyed by an acid from the decomposition of the ferric gentianate. 

Am Ma°r Ur i8 P 7 6r rm ' } Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations, 141 

The papers were accepted and referred. Some discussion ensuing in regard to 
the time of holding the meetings 5 on motion it was decided to hold the next meet- 
ing on March 21st, at 3 P. M. 

On motion, the meeting then adjourned. 

RICHARD V. MATTISON, Registrar, pro tern. 


The Connecticut Pharmaceutical Association was organized at New 
Haven, February 9th, nine cities and towns being represented by 30 apothecaries. 
A Constitution and By-laws were adopted, and the following officers elected for the 
ensuing year: President, N. Dikeman, of Waterbury 5 Vice-Presidents, H. H. 
Osgood, of Norwich, and Henry Woodward, of Middletown ; Secretary, Alfred 
Daggett, of New Haven, and Treasurer, G. P. Chandler, of Hartford. An Ex- 
ecutive Committee and a Committee on Queries were appointed, and the following 
delegates chosen to represent the new association at the next meeting of the Amer- 
ican Pharmaceutical Association in September next : Samuel Noyes, New Haven j 
A. F. Wood, New Haven 5 S. R. McNary, Hartford 5 W. W. Mosher, West 
Meriden ; Henry Woodward, Middletown. The annual meeting will be held 
in the city of Hartford on the first Wednesday of February, 1877. - 

The New Hampshire Pharmaceutical Association held its second annual 
meeting in Manchester, on October 12th, Mr. Chas. S. Eastman, of Concord, in 
the chair. The proceedings, an account of which we have received in a neatly- 
printed pamphlet covering 48 pages, consisted in the reading of the officers'' reports 
and discussions on the Pharmacy Law of the State and- on apprenticeship, besides 
the usual routine business. The officers for the present year are Chas. F. Hildreth^ 
of Suncook, President ; P. J. Noyes, of Lancaster, and B. B. Weeks, of Man- 
chester, Vice-Presidents ; H. B. Foster, of Concord, Treasurer 5 G. F. Underhill, 
of Concord, Secretary 5 T. L. Smith, of Dover, Auditor, and P. J. Noyes, Reporter 
on the Progress of Pharmacy. The delegation to the next meeting of the Amer- 
ican Pharmaceutical Association consists of Messrs. Geo. F. Underhill, Chas. S. 
Eastman, Chas. F. Hildreth, H. B. Foster and Thos. L. Smith. The Association, 
whose next annual meeting will convene in Nashua on the first Tuesday of October, 
has 87 members and 23 honorary members, six of the latter residing in Europe. 

The New York Alumni Association of the Philadelpaia College of 
Pharmacy met February 1st. After transacting the usual business, Mr. Plummer 
spoke of the generally bad condition in which herbs are found in most retail stores, 
especially in the smaller ones, and such herbs as have but little demand. He stated 
that they are not unfrequently kept until they become thoroughly musty and mouldy, 
and, though once pressed, become loose, and exhibit the change so much as to en- 
tirely efface the labels. In many stores in this city and throughout the country, 
drugs of this character could be found which have been in stock for a number of 

142 Pharmaceutical Colleges und Associations. { Am \l™? J^™' 

years, and are yet offered for sale. There ought to be a limit to the practice, as 
there are but few botanical drugs which do not deteriorate by time and exposure. 
This class of drugs is not so important a department of the pharmacist's stock as 
formerly, yet it behooves us to be guarded as to the quality of all drugs passing 
through our hands, and it ought to be somebody's business to look after it. 

Mr. Messing said, if parties engaged in putting up herbs, etc., were required to 
print the date of growth on each package, it would be an important precaution. 
Most druggists thoughtlessly allow an old stock of herbs to accumulate, forgetting 
their age 5 but he thought it not warrantable in any case that they be kept longer 
than two to five years, even in proper receptacles, while man}' druggists keep them 
in paper or cigar boxes or loosely piled upon shelves. It was suggested that the 
remarks would as well apply to some pharmaceutical preparations which, being 
little used, stand on the shelves for years, becoming entirely unfit for use, yet they 
are dispensed. The appointment, by the College of Pharmacy or by the Board of 
Health, of an inspector was suggested, who should be an expert of recognized abil- 
ity, and vested with power to condemn all drugs which, after faithful examination, 
prove to be inert, sophisticated or adulterated. The report of the Committee on 
Adulterations and Sophistications, made at the last meeting of the American 
Pharmaceutical Association, shows that quite a variety of such drugs find their 
way into the pharmacies, either through the ignorance or carelessmess of pharma- 
cists. The discussion was extended to some length, bringing out many interesting 
facts upon this important subject, showing that many drugs pass through our mar- 
ket that would be much more fitting in accompaniment with the wares of Shakspeare's 
woe-begotten apothecary of Mantua than to the stock of an American pharmacy. 

The next meeting will be held Tuesday evening, March 7th, when nominations 
are to be made for officers for the ensuing year. 

The Maryland College of Pharmacy held a pharmaceutical meeting, 
February 16th, at which Mr. W. S. Thompson read a paper on hydrobromic acid, 
and Mr. J. F. Hancock one on saffron, giving a sketch of its history, &c. We are 
pleased to learn that this College has purchased from the city of Baltimore one of 
the school-houses, which is located in a pleasant and quiet neighborhood, and has a 
lot 74 feet front by no feet deep. 

Cincinnati College of Pharmacy. — The first pharmaceutical meeting for the 
year 1876 was held February 9th, President Eaton in the chair. The attendance 
was unusually large, and much interest was manifested. Prof. Judge gave the result 
of his experiments on discolored syrup of iodide of iron, and recommended hypo- 
phosphorous acid as the agent to restore the altered syrup, in preference to hyposul- 
phite of sodium, which, on being added to discolored syrup, passes into sodium 
sulphate, and precipitates one-half of the sulphur it contains, leaving the syrup as 
unpleasant in appearance as before the addition. Hypophosphorous acid, having 
the same affinity for oxygen, would effect the same change as the hyposulphite, 
leaving, however, the syrup clear and of the proper color. 

Prof. E. S. Wayne exhibited a specimen of Indian mallow [Abutilon Anjicenna) 
nat. ord. Malvaceae, which is a troublesome weed. Paper, he remarked, was made 

Am Ma" r i8A arm "} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 143 

from the whole stock of the plant, which yielded also an exceellent flax-like fibre, 
that had been woven into fabrics and made into twine and cordage. The Professor 
presented to the cabinet a beautiful specimen of " chimaphilin," and three specimens 
of true balsam of copaiva. 

On motion, thanks were returned for the donations and remarks. Adjourned, to 
meet March 8th, 1876, at 3 o'clock P. M. Louis Schwab, Cor. Sec. 

Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain. — President T. H. Hills occu- 
pied the chair at the pharmaceutical meeting held February 2d. Mr. James Deane 
read a paper entitled " The best form of blistering liquid " The Liquor epispas- 
iicus y Br.P., is made by incorporating 4 fluidounces of acetic acid with 8 oz. of pow- 
dered cantharides, and percolate the mixture, after 24 hours, with ether, until 20 
fluidounces are obtained; from 2 fluidounces of this preparation o*8 grains of can- 
tharidin were obtained. Exhausting the cantharides with sufficient acetic ether to 
obtain 20 fluidounces of percolate, 2*2 grains of slightly impure cantharidin were 
obtained from 2 fluidounces. The same amount of another preparation, made by 
moistening the cantharides with a solution of glacial acetic acid in ether, and per- 
colating with ether, yielded i*8 grains of cantharidin 5 350 grains of cantharides, 
representing 2 fluidounces of the above liquids, yielded 2 grs. of pure cantharidin. 
The author is therefore in favor of one of the last two menstrua, the question as to 
which is the better being medical rather than pharmaceutical. The officinal prepa- 
ration being stronger than necessary, a reduction of the powdered cantharides to 4 
or 5 ounces is advocated. 

Mr. Harold Senier read a paper on " The Composition of Pilula Hydrargyri, 
Br.P." A number of samples were analyzed, with the view of determining the 
amount of metallic mercury and of mercurous frhd mercuric oxides. The results 
showed that the latter gradually increased in quantity with the age of the blue 
mass, which, 18 hours after preparation, was found to contain but a trace of mercu- 
rous oxide 5 after three months, '24 per cent, mercuric and '62 per cent, mercurous 
oxides were obtained, and in another sample, -44 and i'6o per cent, respectively. 
After two years, i*8o mercuric and 4*22 mercurous oxides were present. The 
amount of mercury in the nine samples examined corresponded with the require- 
ments of the " Pharmacopoeia." 

In the discussion following, Professor Redwood called attention to his researches, 
made 14 or 15 years ago, upon Hydrargyrum cum creta, which was found to be 
more rapidly oxidized than blue mass, particularly if made by machinery instead of 
in the mortar. Mr. Greenish referred to the paper of Dr. Squibb ("Amer. Jour. 
Phar.," 1857, P- 388), in which the proneness to the oxidation of mercury in Hy- 
drarg. c. cret. is attributed to its often being too finely divided. 

Mr. John Moss read a paper on Vaseline, showing that this term must be regarded 
as a distinctive name for a mixture of paraffins obtained by a known process, and 
recommended as a substitute for lard and other similar substances for pharmaceu- 
tical purposes. 

Mr. A. W. Gerrard followed with a paper in which he favored the preparation of 
suppositories, using four parts of vaselin and one of paraffin as a base. The advan- 
tages over cacao butter are that the former melts slowly into an unctuous mass, 
which is cleanly and causes no inconvenience to the patient ; that it does not become 



Am. Jour. Pharm, 
Mar. 1876. 

rancid, and that owing to its great power of contraction the suppositories leave the 
moulds with greater ease. 

Preparations made with vaselin were shown by several gentlemen. Considerable 
difference of opinion was expressed as to the adaptibility of paraffin mixtures for 
suppositories. Messrs. Allchin and Williams opposed the use of paraffins in oint- 
ments, because they would not be absorbed by the skin, in which respect lard was 
by far superior. 


Centennial Bureau — It will be of interest to those of our readers who con- 
template exhibiting goods at the approaching international exposition, to learn that 
the house of Peter Wright & Sons, agents for the transatlantic steamers running to 
Philadelphia, has established a bureau for the purpose of attending to the interests 
of exhibitors, and will undertake the transportation of goods from Liverpool or 
Antwerp, their reception at this port, their proper installation, the general care dur- 
ing the exposition,' their disposal or repacking and return. The labor will be 
divided among experts and firms of acknowledged reputation in the leading depart- 
ments of industry and arts, Messrs. Bullock & Crenshaw taking charge of drugs, 
chemicals, chemical apparatus and perfumery. • If it is desired, competent persons 
will be engaged to give their exclusive time to the exhibition and explanation of 

Having received several inquiries in regard to such or similar arrangements, it is 
likely that other readers of the "Journal," in this and foreign countries, may avail 
themselves of such an opportunity. 

Female Apothecaries. — During the past session two ladies have been attend- 
ing the lectures at the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. At the December exam- 
ination of the Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, Isabella Skinner Clarke 
passed the major examination, and was duly registered as " Pharmaceutical 

The Growth and Uses of Benzoin. — Under this title, our last number con- 
tained an essay which was duly credited to the journal in which we found it pub- 
lished, without reference to any other source. Our thanks are due to several corres- 
pondents who called our attention to the fact that the paper in question is almost 
literally copied from Fliickiger and Hanbury's " Pharmacographia," and should, 
therefore, be credited to that excellent work. 

Pancreatin. — The last, volume of the "Proceedings of the American Pharma- 
ceutical Association" contains an interesting paper on this subject, from the pen of 
Prof. E. Scheffer, of Louisville. In the last sentence on page 731 we find a typo- 
graphical error, whereby the author is made to say the opposite of what the results 
of his experiments point to; the sentence in question should read: "The foregoing 
experiments .... prove the uselessness (not usefulness) of pancreatin as a 
therapeutical agent, as it will be decomposed when brought into the stomach." 



APRIL, 1876. 



[Extract from an Inaugural Essay.) 

In order to determine the relative value of inspissated juices and 
alcoholic narcotic extracts, commercial and officinal, an assay of the 
alkaloid in one of the most important of this class, namely, the extract 
of belladonna, was made with care and accuracy. 

Extracts of belladonna were purchased, representing the principal 
houses of this country, and those of Europe which have a very 
extended sale in this country. When purchased, each package had on 
it the manufacturer's label, and was in the original package. The 
process for determining their value was as follows : 10 grams of the 
extract was treated with an equal weight of water, and subjected to a 
gentle heat until the extract was reduced to a syrupy consistence. 
90 c.c. of alcohol was then added, digested and strained, and the 
residue treated, 3 times successively, in a similar manner. To the 
mixed liquids 4 grams of lime was added, previously hydrated and in 
powder, and the flask frequently shaken during twelve hours. The 
lime decomposes the salt of atropia, and removes the organic acid and 
coloring matter by subsequent filtration. The filter was washed with 
alcohol ; diluted sulphuric acid was then added to the filtrate, until 
the liquid acquired an acid reaction, and the precipitate of sulphate of 
calcium and coloring matter removed by filtration, and the filter 
washed. The alcohol was then removed by evaporation, in divided 
portions, at a gentle heat, water added to the mixed liquids and thrown 
on a wetted filter, and sufficient water added to the filter to make the 
solution of sulphate of atropia measure 100 c.c. The atropia having 
been separated from much of the coloring matter, the quantitative 
results were obtained by Mayer's process, namely, a volumetric 
solution of iodohydrargyrate of potassium, or rather of corrosive 


146 Assay of Atropia in Extracts of Belladonna, { Km ^\;I£t™' 

sublimate, in excess of iodide of potassium, the strength of which 
solution was 13*546 grams of corrosive sublimate, and 49*8 grams of 
iodide of potassium, per litre. Of this solution 1 c.c. will precipitate 
•0145 of a gram of atropia. Experiments were first made with a 
known quantity of pure atropia, dissolved in water and dilute sulphuric 
acid, in order to become acquainted with the process and to insure 
correctness with the solution prepared. In each case not less than three 
titrations were made. 



Test solution requisite 


Percentage of 

lor 100 c.c. 01 extract solution. 


atropia in extract. 

Extr. Belladonna? Alcoh. U. S. P. 




Lazell, Marsh & Gardiner, 



a«5 11 

Parke, Davis & Co. 




Burrough Bros. 




Henry Thayer & Co. 




Tilden & Co. 




Chas. Ellis 1 Son k Co. 




McKesson & Robbins, 




E. Merck (alcoholic extract), 

1 0*26 



Geo. Allen & Co. 


•I 4 II 


Herrings & Co. 




Mt. Lebanon, N. Y. (inspissated ji 

jice, 6 

years old), 




E. Merck (aqueous eqtract), made 


r 9 



These results lead to the following conclusions : 

1st. That the American extracts of belladonna contain a larger 
percentage of atropia than the imported, the reason for which, doubt- 
less, is the mode of manufacture ; while the former are generally- 
made from the imported leaves, by the use of alcohol and subsequent 
evaporation, the latter are made from the expressed juice. 

2d. That the extracts which stood lowest in the list of assays were 
aqueous extracts. The two lowest containing but -9 and '2J of one 
per cent, of atropia, and since the date of manufacture of both was 
1869, it tends to show the unstability of such preparations. There 
can be no doubt but that, at a recent date of manufacture, aqueous 
extracts of belladonna, and, perhaps, of hyoscyamus and conium, are 
of better quality, but if, in a few years, they deteriorate to worthless 
extracts, is there not good ground for saying that the class of inspis- 
sated juices of narcotic plants are unstable, unreliable, unsafe and not 
worthy a place in the U. S. Pharmacopoeia ? I say unsafe, for, if a 

Am. Jour. Pharm. \ 
April, 1876. j 

Veratrum Viride. 


worthless article is used by a physician, and he does not perceive the 
desired effect, he will increase the dose until obtained, and conse- 
quently give much larger doses than if he were dealing with an 
extract of good quality ; but when he obtains the extract of good 
quality, the continuation of the same large doses might prove fatal. 

In closing this paper, I would suggest a similar examination of the 
extracts of hyoscyamus and conium, as this is a subject of interest 
and importance to the medical and pharmaceutical profession. 




While engaged on the experiments with jervia, published in Vol. 47, 
page 449, of this Journal, my attention was directed to the circum- 
stance that the portion of the alkaloid taken up by ether (veratroidia), 
when dissolved in acetic acid gave a copious precipitate on addition of 
a solution of nitrate of potassium. This reaction appeared to indicate 
that the greater part of this product was jervia, which, under some 
favoring conditions, had dissolved in the ether. 

With a view of investigating the subject, as also to look more care- 
fully for veratria, if any existed in the drug, the old method of obtain- 
ing the alkaloid as described in my paper, Vol. 37, page 321, was 
retraversed, with some modifications which afforded better results in 
the amount of product obtained. 

The fluid extract of veratrum viride was poured into water, acid- 
ulated with acetic acid (free from sulphuric and hydrochloric acids), 
the resin separated by filtration, and the clear liquid concentrated by 
evaporation until all the alcohol was expelled. Precipitation was then 
effected by caustic soda (in place of carbonate of soda). 

The resin was dried, powdered and digested in warm water acid- 
ulated with acetic acid, and the filtered solution precipitated by soda. 
Finding the resin still contained some alkaloid, it was treated with a 
warm solution of caustic soda, which dissolved the resin readily, leav- 
ing a sediment, which was thrown on a filter and washed until the 
washings were without color. This precipitate was dissolved in dilute 
acetic acid and reprecipitated by caustic soda. From the resin repre- 
senting one pound of the root eight grains of impure alkaloid were 


Veratrum Viride. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Mar. 1876. 

obtained. The whole of these impure products were mixed together, 
dried, redissolved in acetic acid and precipitated by caustic soda. After 
washing and pressing between folds of bibulous paper, it was dissolved 
in alcohol, digested with animal charcoal, filtered, and evaporated to 
dryness. A semi-crystalline mass was obtained, weighing thirty grains 
(from one pound of root). 

The alkaloid was powdered and digested with washed ether. The 
ethereal solution left on evaporation a light-colored resinous coating 
adhering to the upper surface of the capsule, with a crystalline deposit 
at the bottom. 

This product weighed eight grains, and represents the supposed 
^Veratroidia" existing in the drug, and should also contain veratria, if 
any was present. An examination of its character was made as fol- 
lows : . 

Treated with warm dilute acetic acid, it afforded a turbid solution, 
with finely divided insoluble matter held in suspension. After filtra- 
tion, it was precipitated by caustic soda, and the precipitate washed in 
a filter with a warm solution of soda. The alkaline washings (A) were 
reserved, and the alkaloid washed with water to remove the alkali, 
pressed and dried. 1 

Character of the Precipitate. — When dry, it had a light yellow color. 
A portion dissolved in acetic acid (the acid being in excess) gave with 
a solution of nitrate of potassium an abundant precipitate characteristic 
of jervia. This precipitate dissolved on heating the solution, and crys- 
tallized out on cooling. 

Heated on platinum foil, it charred and left a residue when incinerated 
to whiteness ; the grey ash dissolved without effervescence in dilute 
nitric acid ; this solution was divided into two portions. To one was 
added ammonia and oxalate of ammonia ; the usual reaction of lime 
was obtained. To the other acid portion a solution of molybdate of 
ammonia was added ; after standing two hours, a deposit of phospho- 
molybdic acid was obtained. 

The alkaline washings (A), after neutralization with hydrochloric 
acid, were evaporated to dryness, the product powdered and exhausted 
with ether. The ether left, on evaporation, a small amount of resin- 
ous matter, which gave the following color reactions : 

1 An after examination of the soda by alcohol used, showed it to contain traces 
of alumina and magnesia. 

Am Jour. Pharm. 
April, 1876. 

Veratrum Viride. 


With hydrochloric acid, 2l light pink color in the cold ; on heating, the 
color passed to a brownish-yellow. 

With sulphuric acid, a turbid yellow color, soon changing to a mahog- 
any color, passing eventually to brown. 

Heated on platinum foil, it burned with a smoky flame, and left no 

At this stage of proceeding the question arose, Can veratria be recog- 
nized by color tests in the presence of an excess of jervia ? To deter- 
mine the question, ten parts of commercial veratria were intimately 
mixed with one part of crystallized jervia. The color reactions were 
as follows : 

With concentrated sulphuric acid, gives a yellow color, changing to a 
reddish-brown, surrounded by a margin of green. 

With hydrochloric acid, in the cold, a faint pink seen on the upper 
margin ; on heating, a brownish-yellow color. The purple-red color 
of veratria does not appear, neither does the greenish hue given by jer- 
via alone. 

The reactions of veratria were so masked by the jervia that no cor- 
rect judgment could be expressed that veratria was present. 

Veratria is soluble in ether ; according to Fresenius, less soluble 
than in alcohol, when the veratria is pure. 1 Jervia, when pure, is 
almost insoluble in ether, but in the presence of the associated resin it 
dissolves to a limited extent ; hence a separation of the two alkaloids 
by ether cannot be effected so long as resin is present. The jervia 
must first be removed ; to effect this object, I took advantage of the 
insolubility of nitrate of jervia in a solution of nitrate of potassium. 
One part of pure jervia in 1000 parts of water (acetic solution) is pre- 
cipitated almost immediately on addition of a solution of nitrate of 
potassium in excess ; complete precipitation is not effected if any resin 
is present. The precipitate is not soluble in excess of acetic acid ; it 
dissolves on heating the solution, and crystallizes out on cooling. 

Veratria, when dissolved in acetic acid, one part in sixty, the solu- 
tion containing excess of acid, is not disturbed by addition of a solu- 
tion of nitrate of potassium. If a large excess of the potassium solu- 
tion is added, it causes a slight cloudiness, which does not disappear on 
the application of heat. After standing twenty- four hours, no precip- 
itation of the alkaloid takes place. 

1 See Fresenius 1 "Qualitative Analysis," American edition, 1865, page 404. 

i 5 o 

Veratrum Viride. 

( Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ April, 1876. 

A portion of the " veratroidia " was then digested in a solution of 
caustic soda to remove as much resin as possible ; after washing, it was 
dissolved in dilute acetic acid, precipitated by soda, washed, again dis- 
solved in acetic acid, and a solution of nitrate of potassium added 
(causing an immediate precipitate). After standing twelve hours, the 
solution was filtered to free it from nitrate of jervia j addition of caustic 
soda now produced but a small amount of precipitate, this had a light 
yellow color and reacted as follows : 

With sulphuric acid, an evanescent purple, changing immediately to 
brown, then passing to a mahogany red. 

With hydrochloric acid, in the cold, an immediate purple-pink ; on 
heating, the color becomes greenish-yellow. 1 

The remainder of the product was then dissolved in acetic acid, 
addition of nitrate of potassium again afforded the jervia reaction. 

The color reactions, as shown, are of little value in determining the 
presence of veratria mixed with jervia ; the continued precipitation 
caused by nitrate of potassium, as the resin is more perfectly removed, 
points to the conclusion that jervia and resin make up the product 
called " veratroidia." 

Experiment Second. — Having ascertained that muriate of jervia, 
as also muriate of veratria, were soluble in a menstruum composed 
of alcohol, one part, and water, two parts, acidulated with hydrochloric 
acid, the following method of obtaining the products from the drug 
was tried : 


Take of Powdered veratrum viride root, . . 5 pounds 

Clean sand, . . . 10 " 

Alcohol, 95 per cent., . . .10 pints 

Water, . . . 20 " 

Hydrochloric acid, . . * • 7j fluidounces 

The powdered root mixed with the sand was moistened with the 
menstruum. After standing twenty-four hours it was transferred to a 
glass percolator and displaced with the remainder of the menstruum. 
Displacement was then continued with water until thirty pints of per- 
colate was obtained. The alcohol was distilled off and the watery 
solution evaporated to five pints. To this a solution of caustic soda 
was added to decided alkaline reaction, to dissolve the resin and pre- 

1 Pure veratria gives no color when dissolved in hydrochloric acid in the cold. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 1 
April, 1876. J 

Veratrum Viride. 

cipitate the alkaloids, and the whole thrown upon a filter of strong 
paper. After draining off the dark liquor, the contents of the filter 
were washed until the filtrate was almost without color. The solid 
matter in the filter was then partially dried and digested in a warm 
solution of acetic acid. After filtration the acetic solution was precip- 
itated by soda, washed, pressed between folds of bibulous paper, and 
digested in hot alcohol, with addition of a little animal charcoal. The 
alcoholic solution was evaporated until precipitation commenced. On 
cooling it formed an almost solid crystalline mass. When dry, this 
product weighed eighty grains. 

It was dissolved in dilute acetic acid, and an equal volume of cold 
saturated solution of nitrate of potassium added, causing an abundant 
precipitate. After separating the nitrate of jervia, the mother-water 
was precipitated by soda, the precipitate washed, dried and digested in 
washed ether. The etherial solution yielded a residue on evaporation 
weighing about two grains. An examination of this product proved it 
to be jervia mixed with resin. 


After draining the liquid from the drug in the precolator displace- 
ment was continued with strong alcohol, until the root was exhausted ; 
two pints of water were added to the precolate, and the alcohol re- 
moved by distillation. The resinous residue left on evaporation was 
treated with a warm solution of caustic soda until the resin was dis- 
solved, then diluted with water and set aside to settle. After decant- 
ing the dark supernatant liquor, the precipitate was thrown upon a 
filter, washed, treated with a solution of warm acetic acid, and the 
acetic solution precipitated by soda. After washing and pressing be- 
tween folds of paper, the precipitate was dissolved in hot alcohol and 
digested with animal charcoal ; the alcoholic solution, on evaporation 
and cooling, deposited the alkaloid in fleecy prismatic crystals, having 
a rosy tinge of color. Washing in a filter, when nearly dry, with ether, 
removed the coloring matter and left the product almost colorless. The 
amount of alkaloid obtained was 42J grs. ; this added to the 80 grs. 
obtained by the first process with hydrochloric acid and dilute alcohol, 
gives 1 22 J grs. crystallized jervia as the yield from five pounds of root. 
The examination for veratria was conducted as follows : 
After most of the jervia had crystallized out from the alcoholic solu- 
tion, and resinous and coloring matter commenced depositing, the solu- 

I 5 2 

Veratrum Viride. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
April, 1876. 

tion was evaporated to dryness, the product dissolved in warm dilute 
acetic acid, and precipitated by a solution of nitrate of potassium. After 
standing 24 hours to allow the nitrate of jervia to crystallize out, the 
solution was filtered and precipitated by caustic soda, and the precipi- 
tate washed with a warm solution of the alkali, which removed con- 
siderable coloring matter. It was then redissolved in acetic acid, the 
jervia again separated by nitrate of potassium, and the mother- water 
precipitated by soda. This operation was performed the third time, 
after which nitrate of potassium no longer caused a precipitate. When 
heated on platinum foil the product burned with a smoky flame and 
left a residue ; in dilute hydrochloric acid, it dissolved without effer- 
vesence. Addition of ammonia (containing so little carbonate as not 
to disturb a solution of acetate of lime) afforded an immediate precipi- 
tate ; after separation of the precipitate, oxalate of ammonia afforded 
the usual reaction for lime. The product was therefore lime-salts^ 
resin and some alkaloid. To separate these, the product was dissolved 
in alcohol, filtered and evaporated to dryness ; this was treated with 
ether until exhausted, and the ether allowed to evaporate spontaneously. 
The residuum insoluble in the ether was fixed when tried in the flame. 
The ether left, on evaporation, a central portion of white crystalline 
product, with the upper margin surrounded by a non-crystalline, light- 
colored resinous-looking matter. An examination of both of these 
products separately gave no indication of the presence of veratria. The 
whole of this ether product was then treated with dilute acetic acid ; a 
turbid solution was obtained, with finely-divided insoluble matter sus- 
pended (resin). After filtration, addition of a few drops of a solution 
of nitrate of potassium gave an immediate precipitate of nitrate of jervia. 

The Resin, which was dissolved by the solution of caustic soda,, 
was precipitated by dilute sulphuric acid, well washed, dried, pow- 
dered, and treated with rectified petroleum benzin ; the benzin solu- 
tion left on evaporation a light-colored, fatty matter, which solidified 
on cooling. 

The resin was then treated with washed ether until exhausted ; 
on evaporation, the ether left a dark red translucent resin. (This resin 
was entirely insoluble in warm dilute acetic acid, but when triturated 
with precipitated carbonate of lime, a portion afterwards dissolved with 
the lime in acetic acid, and was precipitated with the lime on addition 
of caustic soda, containing a little carbonate ; excess of soda did not 

Am. Jour. Pharm. \ 
April, 1876. J 

Veratrum Viride. 


remove all the resin from the precipitated carbonate of lime. After 
drying the precipitate, it yielded the resin to ether. This experiment 
demonstrates the manner in which this resin follows the alkaloid con- 
taining earthy salts in dissolving in acids, and precipitating with it on 
addition of alkalies.) 

The resin was dissolved in alcohol and digested with animal char- 
coal, until most of the color was removed. The alcohol left, on evapo- 
ration, a soft resin. This resin reacts with strong sulphuric acid*in a 
manner well calculated to suggest the presence of veratria, — giving a 
brownish-red color passing to a cherry-red, and finally to a mahogany 
color. After standing some hours the solution looses its color and 
carbonized particles separate. 

To hydrochloric acid in the cold, this resin imparts a light pink 

The resin was treated with warm acetic acid, and found to contain 
no alkaloid. 

As the result of these experiments we find jervia to be the only alka- 
loid in the root of veratrum viride. The so-called veratroidia is a mix- 
ture of jervia with a light-colored resin ; the larger the amount of this 
resin present, the greater will be the proportion of jervia taken up by 
ether. In the first experiment we had eight grains dissolving in ether 
out of thirty ; in the second, where the resin was more completely re- 
moved by caustic soda, eighty grains yielded but two grains to ether. 

The reaction of the alkaloid with sulphuric acid, hitherto considered 
to indicate the presence of veratria, is due to a resin which is taken up 
by ether, and which adheres with great persistence to the alkaloid, dis- 
solving and precipitating with it. 

The interesting question arises, to what are we to attribute the 
marked difference in the physiological effects shown by experiments 
made with jervia and " veratroidia ?" It must be attributed to the 
resin — either per se or as modifying the effects of jervia. The subject 
is worthy of further investigation. 

To obtain jervia entirely white, the nitrate is decomposed by digest- 
ing it with a solution of caustic soda, washing, redissolving in acetic 
acid, precipitating by soda, dissolving in hot alcohol, evaporating and 
crystallizing. It crystallizes in white prismatic crystals resembling sul- 
phate of morphia. These crystals fuse at 380 to 385 F., and are 
insoluble in ether. From acetic solution caustic alkalies, including 

154 As arum Canadense. { Am X J P Xx876. rm ' 

ammonia, precipitate jervia completely ; — the precipitate is insoluble in 
an excess of these precipitants. 1 



[Extract from an Inaugural Essay.) 
This officinal drug, which has been placed in the secondary list of 
our " Pharmacopoeia," is known under the popular names of wild gin- 
ger, Indian ginger, colt's foot root and Canada snake root, and is used 
instead of ginger by the country people in some parts of New Eng- 
land. On account of its medicinal properties, it has been noticed by 
all our writers on native medicines ; but further than occupying a place 
in our Materia Medica, it seems to be very little used in regular prac- 

That the rhizome possesses properties adapting it to be classed with 
the aromatic stimulants, is shown by its constituents, as given by Big- 
elow, Rushton and Procter. According to Rushton, it contains gum, 
starch, resin, fatty matter, chlorophyl, volatile oil, salts of lime, potassa 
and iron, to which may be added lignin. Of the volatile oil he says : 
" It is of a light greenish-yellow color, having a warm, slightly bitter- 
ish aromatic taste, and contains all the virtues of the plant." 

Wm. Procter, Jr., has extended our knowledge concerning the 
volatile oil, and medicinal properties of the root. He says : u The 
essential oil seems the most energetic element ; the root possessing 
neither emetic nor cathartic properties, but is an aromatic stimulant 
with diaphoretic powers. It contains neither asarite or asarum cam- 
phor, nor substances analogous to them." It is thus seen to possess 
none of the emetic or cathartic properties of its congener, the Asarum 
Europaeum, which would render it unfit for use as an aromatic. 

It would seem strange that, possessing, as this root does, such pleas- 
ant and strongly aromatic properties, its use should be so limited. 
Doubtless, this neglect is, in a great measure, owing to the want of 

1 After completing these examinations, my friend, George J. Scattergood, kindly 
placed in my hands his original notes, with samples of the products obtained by 
him from Veratrum viride in 1862. The products marked " veratria," I found to 
be jervia mixed with the peculiar resin which gives a mahogany red color with sul- 
phuric [acid. They correspond with the product called " veratroidia," an exami- 
nation of which was one of the objects of the present investigation. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
April, 1876. j" 

As arum Canadense. 

suitable pharmaceutical preparations which might be offered to the 
physician. If the aromatic properties of this drug, which is easily ob- 
tainable, can be exhibited in such a way as to be substituted for the 
more costly ones now used in so many of our officinal preparations, 
there can be no reason why it should not be done, for it would cer- 
tainly afford these preparations at a much less cost to the pharmacist. 

Joseph L. Lemberger (" Proceedings Am. Pharm. Asso.," vol. xvii, 
page 382) recommends the substitution of asarum and calamus for the 
cardamom in extract, colocynth. comp., and says, " We can easily dis- 
pose of cardamom, and substitute some of our indigenous aromatics." 

With a view of making some pharmaceutical preparations of asarum 
which might serve the physician as a vehicle or adjuvant, the writer 
has made several experiments, the results of which he submits to ex- 
amination. Before attempting the preparations, however, experiments 
were made, in order to become better acquainted with the constituents 
furnishing the aromatic properties of the root. 

Eight ounces of the dried root was ground, and macerated with five 
pints of water for twenty-four hours ; introduced into a copper still, 
and two pints distilled over. This distillate was of a milky appear- 
ance, having a layer of volatile oil on top. The volatile oil being 
separated, the water was saturated with sodium chloride and redistilled 
as long as the second distillate came over odorous — amounting to one 
and a-half pints. The second distillate was slightly milky, having 
small oil globules on the surface. The oil being separated by means 
of a pipette, the water was again treated with sodium chloride, and dis- 
tilled. This time twelve ounces were obtained, having odor and taste 
of volatile oil. The small portion of oil floating on this distillate was 
separated, and the water, for the third time, saturated with sodium 
chloride and distilled. After four ounces were recovered, the water 
passed over odorless and tasteless. The oil floating on this fourth dis- 
tillate was in such minute quantity as to be with difficulty separated. 
The volatile oil thus obtained amounted to 2 per cent, of the root 
employed, and corresponded to the description given of it by Rushton 
and Procter. 

The mother-liquor left in the still after each operation, consisting of 
a saturated solution of sodium chloride, was found to still contain or- 
ganic matter. Four portions were agitated with ether, chloroform, 
gasolin and bisulphide of carbon, respectively, each separated, and 


As arum Canadense. 

{Am. Jour. Pharm. 
April, 1876. 

evaporated spontaneously, leaving, in each case, a slight residue. Ether 
appearing to be the best solvent, the whole of the mother-liquor was 
agitated with it, the supernatant liquid separated, evaporated spon- 
taneously, residue dissolved in alcohol, and again evaporated. A soft 
resinous product was thus obtained, neutral to test-paper, having a 
strong, agreeable odor, entirely different from the volatile oil, and pe- 
culiar to itself. It possessed a warm, pungent taste, quite lasting. The 
amount of this principle obtained was too small to institute any further 
experiments. It would seem from this, however, that we are not to 
look upon the essential oil as the only volatile constituent representing 
the aromatic properties of the root ; for this new volatile principle, 
although in very small quantity, exhibited its characteristics in a very 
distinct manner, thereby being easily distinguished from the volatile oil. 

In addition to these volatile principles, asarum also contains con- 
siderable amount of a resin which is by no means inactive. In pre- 
paring a fluid extract and tincture, alcohol was used as menstruum, for 
the purpose of obtaining all this resin. Using ether as menstruum, an 
oleo-resin was first prepared. 

Eight troyounces of the dried root, sufficiently fine to pass through 
a No. 40 sieve, was precolated with stronger ether, until the precolate 
passed through colorless. The greater portion of ether was recovered 
by distillation, the remainder evaporated spontaneously, leaving an oleo- 
resin of a liquid consistence, amounting to 10 per cent., by weight, of 
the root employed, and possessing all the properties of the drug. 

A fluid extract was made according to directions given by Parrish, 
in his second-class of fluid extracts. 

Several tinctures were prepared, using different proportions of alco- 
hol and water ; but alcohol (sp. gr. '835) seemed to afford the best 
menstruum. The strength of the tincture made was four ounces to 
the pint. 

From the fluid extract two syrups were made, one possessing the 
virtues of the resin, as well as the volatile oil, while the other was 
deprived of the resin by trituration with magnesium carbonate. A 
marked difference was to be observed in the taste as well as appear- 
ance of these two syrups. The one freed from resin was, of course, 
much the handsomer, being transparent and of a dark amber color, 
while the one containing the resin, although of a lighter color, was 
hardly transparent. The first syrup would be the best for use where 

Am. Jour.Pharm. ) 
April, 1876 / 

Syrup of Ferrous Iodide. 

J 57 

only a flavoring ingredient is wanted ; but where something is needed 
to disguise the taste of a medicine prescribed, the syrup containing the 
resin would answer an excellent purpose, as it has a very strong taste, 
precisely like that of the root, and at the same time so pleasant as to 
be agreeable to the taste of almost every one. 

The preparation of the above syrups may be comprised in the fol- 
lowing formulae : 

Syrup of As arum (first process). 
Fl. ext. of asarum, . . . . f^i 

White sugar, ..... ^xv 
Water, ..... f^viii 

Triturate one-half the sugar with the fluid extract, and heat moder- 
ately to evaporate the alcohol. Add the remainder of the sugar, then 
the water ; raise to boiling point, and strain. 

This gives rather more than a pint of syrup of a light color, and 
with only a slight turbidity. 

Syrup of Asarum (second process.) 

Fl. ext. of asarum, ..... f^i 
Magnesium carbonate, .... grs. cxx 
White sugar, ..... ^xv 

Water, ..... f 3 viii 

Rub the fluid extract with the carbonate of magnesium and a small 
quantity of sugar, and then with the water, gradually added, and filter. 
To the filtered liquid add the remainder of the sugar, dissolve with the 
aid of a gentle heat, and strain. 



(Read before the Cincinnati College of Pharmacy.) 

When proper care is taken in the preparation of Syrup of Ferrous 
Iodide, a product is obtained of a pale green tint, which, if kept in full 
and well stopped bottles, does not change color ; but it occasionally 
happens that from some defect or other in the process, the syrup does 
not retain its pale green, but assumes a brownish hue. 

Some years since, hyposulphite of sodium was proposed as an agent 
capable of restoring the syrup, when discolored, to its normal tint. In 
producing this change, sodium hyposulphite, by its affinity for oxygen, 
passes into sodium sulphate, and in so doing parts with one-half of 
the sulphur it contains, thus : Na 2 S 2 3 +H 2 0+I 2 =Na 2 S0 4 +2HI+S. 

Syrup of Ferrous Iodide. 

Am. Jour. Pharm: 
April, 1876. 

The sulphur precipitates in minute division and remains suspended in 
the syrup, rendering it turbid and nearly as unsightly as before the 
treatment with the hyposulphite. 

About two years ago, I had some syrup of ferrous iodide which had 
changed color, and desiring to restore it to its original greenish tint, I 
did not feel disposed to use hyposulphite of sodium, because of the 
precipitate of sulphur already mentioned. In thinking upon the matter, 
I concluded that hypophosphorous acid, having like affinity for oxygen, 
would perform a similar work to that effected by the hyposulphite. I, 
therefore, added to a sample of my colored syrup a few drops of 
hypophosphorous acid (P. & W.'s), shook the bottle, and allowed it to 
stand a short time, and examined it, when it was found to have re- 
sumed the proper color, and the syrup was perfectly clear; I then 
treated the whole of the discolored syrup with hypophosphorous acid 
with like satisfactory results. The chemistry of these reactions will 
be readily understood by the following equations : 

HPH 2 02+I 2 +H 2 0=2HI+H 3 PO s , or 
HPH 2 2 +I 4 +2H 2 0=4HI+H 3 P0 4 , or 
HPH 2 2 -f2Fe 2 OI 4 = 4 FeI 2 +H 3 P0 4 . 
There are on the table two small bottles of syrup of ferrous iodide 
taken from one lot ; to one has been added a few drops of hypophos- 
phorous acid, and its color is normal, the other is exhibited for com- 
parison, showing the change of color. 

If, after making syrup of ferrous iodide, it is observed that it has a 
slight olive tint in place of the pure pale green ; this may be removed 
by the addition of a small quantity of solution of hypophosphorous acid, 
and upon introducing some clean, small nails or wire, and allowing it to 
stand awhile, small bubbles of gas (hydrogen) will be observed accumu- 
lating on the surface of the nails, and if the bottle is moved these will 
pass up through the syrup ; the nails react with the hydriodic acid 
(formed as explained in the foregoing equations), with the liberation of 
hydrogen and production of ferrous iodide. Syrup thus treated is not 
prone to become discolored soon again. 

It is not my intention to propose that hypophosphorous acid be in- 
troduced as a regular constituent of syrup of ferrous iodide, for I am 
opposed to tampering with officinal formulas ; but I do suggest it as a 
remedy for the difficulty, when syrup of the iodide of iron changes 

Am X J P rii% P 876 a . rm -} The Pill Subject. i 59 




The article, by the writer, on the "Ready-made Pills of our day," 
which was published in the recent Proceedings of the American Pharm- 
aceutical Association, seems to have caused a disturbance in the 
ranks of the pill fraternity, more particularly, however, to some inter- 
ested in the high-pressure lenticulars, who no doubt, find it up-hill 
work to force them upon the market, and who grow restive under 

The results, as published in the paper above mentioned, having been 
the subject of so much misconstruction, it has been deemed best to 
reproduce the principal portions of the paper, in order that a clearer 
understanding may be had concerning it. 

After the preface, the following occurs : 

" Realizing the fact that a fair absolute test of solubility that would 
be applicable to all the varied conditions of the fluids of the stomach, 
whether acid, alkaline, or neutral, would be an impossibility, it was 
thought best to take temperature, acidity, alkalinity, and digestive 
power into consideration, and from this range a tolerably fair judgment 
might be arrived at. 

" Taking, then, fair samples of the best pills that the market afforded 
the following experiments were made : (See page 160.) 

" An examination of the results as tabulated shows that the plain 
un coated pill is to be preferred in point of solubility ; that next in order 
the sugar-coated pill comes ; then the compressed, and lastly the 

" It was thought advisable to try, along with the comparative 
tests, the Cachet de Pain under the same circumstances, and it 
will be seen that this method of coating powders and pills is 
superior to any in point of permitting the medicine to dissolve or digest 

A careful examination of these remarks in connection with the table 
of Relative Solubilities, which is reprinted just as it occurs in the " Pro- 
ceedings," will convince most of the readers of the u Journal " who 
take sufficient interest in the subject, that the conclusions arrived at 
were correctly deduced from the results of the experiment ; and it is 
the intention to pursue the inquiry further, and report at a future time. 

A recent review of the article by a friend and neighbor (page 121, 
March number, "Am. Jour. Pharmacy ") contains some inaccuracies, 
which may be usefully corrected. 

160 The Pill Subject. 

("Am. Jour Pharm. 
( April, 1876. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 1 
April, 1876. j 

The Pill Subject. 


This critic complains, firstly, that a pill made with glycerin as an 
excipient, is not a fair criterion of the uncoated ready-made pill of our 
day. In reply to this the writer would say that he has taken the trou- 
ble to inquire of a number of pharmacists as to the excipient used by 
them for pills which they expect to keep for a greater or lesser length 
of time, and he finds that the majority use glycerin, either by itself or 
in combination, and the reason is obvious — to keep the pill in a soft or 
friable condition, so as to secure ready disintegration, and the belief 
that this method of making a pill, represented the best kind of ready- 
made pill of our day, has been further confirmed. 

He states, secondly, " that he should have given the preference to the 
compressed pills, as it appears in his tables that they were the only ones dis- 
solved ; all the others were only disintegrated. 

This statement in point of fact is not correct, as a glance at my 
table will show, the word dissolved having been used twice, not in rela- 
tion to compressed pills, but in the last column of the Pil. Quiniae 
Sulph. table the word will be seen twice, connected with the plain and 
sugar-coated pill. 

The reason the word was used at all, in alluding to the compressed 
quinia pill, is simply because this form of quinia pill could not possibly, 
under the circumstances, be forced to disintegrate. is a hard mass, 
and it is its habit to dissolve slowly from the outside, the pill growing 
smaller and smaller until it finally disappears, whilst the plain and 
sugar-coated pills usually disintegrated quickly. 

The disintegration of the pill must soon be followed by solution or 
digestion, if the stomach contains any fluids (as most stomachs do), and 
the mass of which the pill is composed is capable of being acted upon. 

The next complaint is, "In the case of the uncoated compound cathar- 
tic pill, Mr. Remington uses the indefinite and impractical expression of 
Gone in fifteen minutes. This implies a perfect solution of the pill, and 
when we take the ingredients into consideration, we know that they cannot 
be wholly dissolved in a weak alkaline solution. 

My friend has been led astray again. Here, the expression " Gone 
in 15 minutes" expresses the fact exactly. The pill, as a pill, was 
gone. My table has it, Plain uncoated pill, gone in 15 minutes. It 
had disappeared. There is no warrant whatever for his statement that 
a a perfect solution of the pill was implied" and the only object of using 
this admittedly odd expression was to avoid the incorrect one of dis- 

1 1 


The Pill Subject. 

J Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ April, 1876. 

But let us look for a moment at my friend's table, on page 124 of 
the March number (before quoted). It is headed, Comparative table, 
showing the time required for dissolving 1 the different makes of pills, as 
enumerated, in water, at 100 01 Fahrenheit, and in a solution corres- 
ponding to the gastric juice, at ioo° Fahrenheit. 

Under it, by casting the eye down the first column, we see, not only 
the compound cathartic pill dissolved 'in plain warm water, without the use 
of even weak alkali, but rhubarb, compound rhubarb, and, worse than 
either, aloes and mastiche ; and this error is repeated in many places, 
in these and in other cases throughout his table. 

How was the solution of the rhubarb, mastiche, calomel, etc., etc., 
in plain water accomplished ? 

A curious error in this connection occurs again in my critic's table, on 
page 124. The second pill on the list is called Pil. Quiniae bisulph., 2 gr., 
and it is under the column officinal. (?) The time taken to dissolve this 
pill is set down as 45 minutes, in water, temp. ioo°. 

He himself defines a regular officinal ready-made pill of the shop as 
one usually made in strict accordance with the ingredients and excipi- 
ents directed in the United States "Pharmacopoeia." See page 1 21 
(12th line in article). 

Now, in what edition of our national authority does he find this pill 
officinal ? and how could he use officinal ingredients and excipients for 
it, when such a pill does not exist in our " Pharmacopoeia" ? 

The next attempted criticism is in relation to the shaking every 
three minutes in the case of the gelatin coated pill. It will be observed 
that the time referred to here (18 hours) is in the first case connected 
with a distinct sentence, for it says, Quinine not all dissolved in 18 
hours, and in the second case, Pill retains its shape for 24 hours. 

It may be said, also, that as this was a comparative test, as soon as 
the position of the pill was determined in the race the point was set- 
tled, and although the time occupied in making the experiments did 
extend far into the night, the terms 18 and 24 hours do not fully express 
the full time that it did take to disintegrate the pills in their respective 
liquids, the actual time being much longer, but are added as explanatory 

The next point as to how temperature can be maintained is not 
worthy of consideration, and was not stated in the paper because the 
writer believed that every member of the American Pharmaceutical As- 
sociation knew how to manage such a simple thing as this. 

1 Italics, mine. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
April, 1876. J 

The Pill Subject. 


My critic's next subject of attack — the object of the representation 
of the cut of the pill machine for making the third-rate pill — is best 
answered by quoting from the original paper the statement, which is (re- 
ferring to the compressed pill), that 

" The powerful pressure, often brought to bear to cause the dry materials to co- 
here, often operates unfavorably in this variety of pill, except in a few instances 
where the ingredient is readily soluble, as bisulphate quinia, bromide or iodide of 
potassium, etc., etc. 

" It may not be known that this variety can be made readily by the pharmacist 
himself, if he so desires, by having a mechanic make a simple piece of apparatus. 
" Take a solid cylinder of iron," etc., etc., 

and then follows a description of how to make a pill-press. 

How my friend can construe the above, so as to cause him to make 
the statement, " That Mr. Remington really intended to endorse the 
compressed pills as superior to all other ready-made pills of our day," 
is a mystery. 

My friend objects to the opinion advanced that the pressure used in 
making a compressed pill interferes with its solubility, and puts forward 
a microscopical examination to prove his position, and he finds that 
under the microscope they are quite porous. What does " quite 
porous " mean, were the pores measured by a micrometer ? Did he 
try the plain, sugar-coated or gelatin- coated pill, under the same 
power, for relative porosity, and, if so, why were the results not 
given. The fact is that pores are very plainly visible {without the use 
of the microscope), when either the plain, sugar-coated or gelatin- 
coated pills are broken open, as any one may prove easily. 

The last point which my neighbor finds fault with is the simple 
process of shaking, employed by the writer. 

It was not pretended that the pills were subjected to exactly this 
method of treatment when in the stomach, but it was believed that if 
" fair samples of the best pills that the market afforded " were placed 
in various liquids, and all agitated in a similar manner, that a tolerably 
fair comparative test would be afforded. Yet, how inconsistent is my 
friend. He objects to agitation, and yet attaches four bottles, loaded 
with quinia pills and water, to the eccentric rod of an upright steam- 
engine, speeded up to 350 revolutions a minute, and of course it ends 
in bringing out his favorite so-called patent pill ahead of all others ; 
but does he not entirely stultify his results by his next few sentences, 
when he says " the digestive process of the stomach is not agitation, 
but more properly a churning or circulatory displacement process, quiet 
but continuous in its mode of operation " ? Would it not follow 
most naturally that if these were his conscientious views on the sub- 
ject of digestive or peristaltic action, that, instead of the eccentric rod 
of an upright steam-engine, speeded up to 350 revolutions a minute, 
the proper apparatus would have been an old-fashioned churn revolving 
once, say, in '350 minutes, quiet and continuous in its mode of opera- 
tion, or a circulatory displacer ? 


Cachets de Pain. 

< Am. Jour. Pharm 
I April, 1876. 



I have read the article in the March " Journal " headed " Cachets 
de Pain," by H. P. Lechler, Ph.G., and extend my sympathy to him 
in his unfortunate experience with the article. He has described 
correctly the manner of preparing these wafers, but his manipulations 
have not been successful ; still he should not on this account condemn 
the whole arrangement, when hundreds of others will testify to their 
success in preparing them and the great satisfaction given both to phy- 
sicians and patients by the use of them. I desire to add a word on the 
subject which my friend <c hopes will be referred to as a thing of the 
past." I do not intend or wish to argue that these wafers will be or 
ever were intended as a substitute on " all " occasions for the usual 
pills or powders ; but there are cases, not unfrequent, where the phy- 
sician wishes to give a nauseous or bitter dose, the taste of which he 
would like to disguise. In such cases these wafers answer the purpose 
admirably. I will refer to the different points mentioned by Mr. Lech- 
ler, who I feel has not been correctly informed as to the proper way of 
preparing and giving directions for taking these wafers, hoping it may 
enable those who have had like experience with him to dispense the 
article with more satisfaction to themselves and their customers. 

Mr. Lechler declares that it takes at least five times as long to pre- 
pare twelve cachets as to prepare the same number of powders or pills. 
Our experience has been very different. We have prepared thousands 
of them since they were first introduced, and the time required has 
been very little if any more than for folding the same number of pow- 
ders. The complaint that the discs adhere to the press, indicates that 
the dies are not clean, or have become wet by the excess of moisture 
spoken of by Mr. Lechler. All kinds of apparatus and machinery, 
ever so complete and perfect in their different parts, require more or 
less skill and judgment on the part of the operator. Sealing corks 
with a metal stamp and sealing-wax is a very simple operation, and 
makes a beautiful, smooth impression, when properly done ; but by 
continued use the stamp gets warm, and the wax begins to stick to it ; 
now, if the operator persists in trying to make a good impression, he 
will fail every time till he cleans and cools the stamp. So, also, in 
using the wafer machine. Careful drying after they are removed from 
the press is not necessary if properly prepared. I have seen quinine 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 1 
April, 1876. t 

Cachets de Pain. 


wafers prepared by the hundred and thrown into a large bottle imme- 
diately as they were taken from the press, without adhering to each 
other in any instance. There is no occasion at any time to have an 
excess of moisture on the rim of the wafers if the proper appliances are 
used. There is to be had what is called a " Cachet Machine," which 
has among its several parts a "Wetter," suited to each of the three sizes 
of wafers ; also, a " Wetting Pad," by the use of which just the proper 
quantity of moisture is applied, and in just the proper place around the 
rim of the wafer. If my friend has used a brush to accomplish this 
(as I have known some to do), I can easily account for the excess of 
moisture he speaks of. 

The tendency to cause a rupture, as referred to, is very rare, if u a 
little " care is used in handling them, and it is taken into consideration 
that a slight pressure of the hand on the press is all that is needed to 
secure the edges of the discs to each other. In regard to the direc- 
tions for the patient — "to simply dip the wafer in water, then with 
the fingers put it on the tongue, and swallow with a draught of water," 
is not correct, and will occasion many failures in attaining the object 
for which they are intended. The mere dipping in water is not suffi- 
cient to make them soft and pliable ; and if they are held long enough 
to accomplish this, they become so glutinous that the least pressuse of 
the finger would cause a rupture. 

The proper directions are : Place a wafer in a spoonful of water, 
let remain a few seconds, till soft, then swallow altogether. " If nec- 
essary," it might be well to add " the patient need not swallow the 
spoon." In regard to the physicians not giving the proper directions 
for taking them, this can, and should be remedied by every intelligent 
apothecary, namely, have the above directions printed on a small label, 
and placed on the box, in addition to the usual ]^ label. Given accord- 
ing to these directions, Cachets become soft and pliable, accommodate 
themselves to the shape of the throat and afford no discomfort or 
inconvenience to the patient. A child can take the large size without 

Any one, physician or patient, seeing a new thing, for the first time, 
without any explanation, in many cases will be perfectly ignorant of 
its use or mode of operation, and, for want of a proper explanation, 
it may fall into disrepute. This, no doubt, has often been the case 
with Cachets. 


Practical Notes. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
April, 1876. 

I heard an intelligent physician, when shown these wafers the first 
time, remark, " Why, you don't expect any one to swallow those big 
buttons, those rough edges would scratch a man's throat," but when it 
was explained how they were used, and he had actually swallowed one, 
he changed his tune and left the store with the remark, " They are 
excellent for the purpose they are intended." 

The claim of the inventor of Cachets, that, by their use, two 
separate salts can be introduced into the stomach, and there form 
another salt, is verily true. The combinations made use of by Mr. 
Lechler have enabled him to show (in these instances only), the 
absurdity of the claim. I do not know if any of his friends in the 
medical profession are in the habit of directing a Seidlitz powder to be 
taken thus, the white powder to be taken first, and the blue one imme- 
diately after, in order to have the tartrate of soda in a nascent state in 
the stomach. I do not recollect any instance where a physician has 
desired to prescribe mixtures that would produce such evolution of 
carbonic acid in the stomach as those mentioned by Mr. Lechler, and, 
therefore, do not consider it a fair test. There are many instances 
where the claim can, and has been, successfully brought into use. 

I have written these lines solely with a desire to show the friends in 
pharmacy that there are some good qualities in these wafers, and that 
they answer an excellent purpose in many cases. 



Medicated Waters. — As medicated waters are very apt to spoil, I 
conceived, two years ago, the idea of substituting glycerin for magne- 
sia. I was successful with the experiment so far, and therefore lay it 
before the profession for consideration. The formula is the following : 

Volatile oil, ..... %ss 

Glycerin (pure), %n 
Mix by succussion, add 

Distilled water, ..... ^ii 

Mix and transfer to a filter, adding through it the requisite quantity 
of water. 

Adulteration of Balsam of Peru. — A simple test, by which even a 
small addition of castor oil to the balsam may be detected, is the fol- 
lowing : 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ") 
April, 1876. J 

The Division of Poisons. 


Put ten drops of suspected balsam in a mortar, and rub it quickly 
with half a fluidrachm of sulphuric acid for one minute ; add then half 
a fluidounce of water, keeping rubbing briskly for two minutes longer. 
Take the resulting black mass out, put it on a piece of filtering-paper, 
in order to detach the adhering diluted sulphuric acid. When the 
balsam is pure, it will give a quickly-hardening black, after an hour, 
brittle mass ; but when the balsam is mixed with castor oil, the re- 
sulting mass will stay tenacious, stick to the fingers, and resemble soft, 
black pitch. 

Carrollton, La., February, 1876. 



(Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, March 2.1st.) 

As a large number of the medicines prescribed by physicians of the 
present day are very poisonous, it devolves upon the pharmacist to exer- 
cise the greatest care and caution in compounding prescriptions contain- 
ing such poisonous substances as strychnia, hydrarg. chlor. cor., 
arsenious acid, narcotic extracts, etc. It often occurs that physicians 
prescribe these remedies in minute doses for children, aged persons and 
delicate females ; it is, therefore, exceedingly important that they should 
not receive a fraction over the quantity prescribed. 

The greatest care and attention should be given to this class of 
prescriptions, so that, when a third is prescribed, a half grain may not 
be given, which, in all probability, would result very seriously, or pro- 
duce a condition of affairs entirely different from that anticipated by the 
physician ; moreover, the uncertainty attending the weighing of frac- 
tions of grains by ordinary scales, renders it necessary for the pharma- 
cist to first weigh one grain and then divide this into the quantity 
prescribed, in other words, virtually guess at the quantity. 

To remedy this, and at the same time, secure to physicians and 
pharmacists absolute certainty, I would recommend that trituration of 
the poisons in common use be made of such a strength that each grain 
of the trituration shall represent a certain quantity of the poison, and 
the trituration be made only with sugar of milk. The reasons for 
using this substance are various. In the first place, sugar of milk is 
a harmless, hard, gritty, odorless and almost tasteless substance. It is 

1 68 Remarks on Iron Salts. { Am ^ 

less liable to attract moisture from the atmosphere than any other sub- 
stance; in fact, it posesses all the qualities desired for making a perfect 
trituration. The proportion I would suggest are one grain of the 
poisonous substance to seven grains of sugar of milk, making in all, 
eight grains, — the whole to be thoroughly triturated. The process of 
trituration is too well known to pharmacists to require elucidation in 
this article, and they are also well aware how important it is to carry 
out this process in an exact and careful manner. 

Now, when a physician writes for a quarter of a grain of arsenious 
acid, all that is necessary is to weigh two grains of the trituration, and 
you have the quarter of a grain desired. This method I hold to be 
the safest in weighing poisons — a method by which very small frac- 
tions of grains may be obtained, — and where children, the aged or very 
delicate are interested, to be one of precision. The physician can also 
prescribe with a feeling of certainty when using those poisonous sub- 
stances in this trituration, and he may have the assurance that, when 
he prescribes the one quarter of a grain, he obtains that amount, — for 
the reason, that two grains of any substance will turn the beam of an 
ordinary scale more readily than a quarter of a grain. I have, seen 
scales in some of our first-class stores on which the half of a grain 
could not be weighed with any degree of certainty, but on which two 
or four grains could be weighed with accuracy. 

Likewise, the pharmacist can be more expeditious in dispensing his 
order, thereby rendering the sick a prompt, safe and reliable prescrip- 
tion, and one exactly in accordance with the physician's wants. 



These preparations are all obtained by spreading the thick, syrupy 
liquid of the several salts on glass or marble, and letting it dry in the 
open air, or, which is preferable on account of being more expeditious, 
in a drying chamber. They are handsome and elegant in appearance^ 
and their successful preparation gives great satisfaction to the preparer. 
In the following, I desire to give some of my observations regarding 
these preparations, noted down while making them. 

The " U. S. Pharmacopoeia " gives formulae for the preparation of 
seven. They are : Ferri citras, ferri et ammonii citras, ferri et am- 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
April, 1876. 

Remarks on Iron Salts. 


monii tartras, ferri et potassii tartras, ferri et quiniae citras, ferri et 
strychniae citras and ferri pyrophosphas. There are others, obtained in 
the same form as these, but not officinal. I propose to confine my re- 
marks to the above-mentioned, exclusively. 

Except pyrophosphate of iron, they all have oxide of iron for base. 
This is made from the solution of tersulphate of iron, by precipitating 
with water of ammonia. To obtain a perfect oxide of iron free from 
discoloration, a solution of tersulphate of iron is used, in which all 
sulphate of iron is perfectly oxidized. In preparing the solution, this 
is ascertained by taking a small quantity, diluting with water, and add- 
ing water of ammonia in excess. If a clear, reddish-brown precipitate 
results, oxidation is complete, but, if it is discolored, brownish-black, 
with dirty gray, nitric acid is added to the hot solution, drop by drop, 
until the disengagement of nitrous acid gas ceases, when the oxidation 
will be found to be complete, and the precipitate obtained without dis- 
coloration. The precipitated oxide of iron is washed until the wash- 
ings pass nearly tasteless, or if wanted perfectly pure, first wash with 
water, and finally with distilled water, until the washings cease to pro- 
duce a precipitate with chloride of barium. 

The magma of oxide ^of iron is dissolved in citric acid at a temper- 
ature not exceeding 140 F., and evaporated at the same temperature, 
to form citrate of iron. This salt dissolves with difficulty in cold, but 
more readily in warm water. 

Ammonio-citrate of iron is prepared by adding a sufficient quantity of 
water of ammonia to neutralize the acid solution of citrate of iron. 
This neutralization renders an otherwise difficultly soluble salt readily 
soluble in cold water. 

In tartrate of iron and ammonium, oxide of iron is dissolved in a 
neutralized solution of bitartrate of ammonium. The " Pharmacopoeia " 
says, " slowly soluble," which is so, it being rather slowly soluble. 

Tartrate of iron and potassium is made by dissolving oxide of iron 
in the free tartaric acid of bitartrate of potassium or cream of tartar. 
The " Pharmacopoeia " says, " wholly soluble in water." I find it, 
prepared strictly according to the formula, slowly soluble in cold water, 
the solution depositing a copious precipitate. 

Citrate of iron and quinia is prepared by dissolving a certain quan- 
tity of quinia in solution of citrate of iron. The iC Pharmacopoeia " 
says of the salt, " slowly soluble in cold water," which is in truth so ; 
in fact, it is too slowly soluble. 


Remarks on Iron Salts. 

( Am. Jour. Pharm. 
t April, 1876. 

In citrate of iron and strychnia, strychnia is dissolved in a solution 
of citrate of iron and ammonium. The dry salt is readily soluble in 
cold water. 

For pyrophosphate of iron, instead of water of ammonia a solution 
of pyrophosphate of soda is used as precipitant. The precipitated 
pyrophosphate of iron is thoroughly washed, for if any considerable 
quantity of sulphate of sodium should remain, it will, when the salt is 
dried, effloresce and destroy its characteristic appearance. The mag- 
ma of pyrophosphate of iron is dissolved in a neutral solution of citrate 
of ammonium. Although the " Pharmacopoeia " says, " it is wholly 
and freely soluble in water," I find it, in reality, very slowly soluble 
in cold water. 

I have often made these several preparations, and those that dissolve 
readily in cold water always gave entire satisfaction ; but the tartrate of 
iron and ammonium, tartrate of iron and potassium, citrate of iron and 
quinia and pyrophosphate of iron, although made strictly according to 
the formulae of the "Pharmacopoeia," and were unexceptional in ap- 
pearance, still their solubility, when compared with that of the same 
preparations purchased from the wholesale manufacturing chemist, was 
invariably found inferior. This proved very discouraging, and for a 
long time I could not find out how to remedy the defect. All the 
certainty I gained was, that the wholesale manufacturing chemist had 
a method of making these preparations readily soluble in cold water, of 
which the " Pharmacopoeia " mentioned nothing. All at once the 
thought occurred to me : If citrate of iron, so difficult of solution in 
cold water, is, by the addition of water of ammonium, rendered readily 
soluble, why should not the other salts, having the same defect, be 
rendered just as soluble by the same addition ? I followed up the idea, 
and found it entirely successful. The water of ammonia is invariably 
added after final filtration, before evaporating to a syrupy consistence. 
Care must be taken, however, not to add too much, especially to 
citrate of iron and quinia. If too much is added to this preparation the 
quinia will be precipitated, although it may be redissolved by the grad- 
ual addition of small quantities of citric acid. If the solutions of the 
different salts are tested before evaporation, before making the addition 
of water of ammonia, they will be found to react decidedly acid, and 
it seems this free acid occasions the difficult solubility of the dry salt. 

If the quantities in the formula for tartrate of iron and potassium of 

Am - fc x P 876 arm ' } So- Called Tasteless Iron Compounds. 1 7 1 

the " Pharmacopoeia " are taken as given, it will require about 3 fl. ozs- 
of water of ammonia for neutralization of the free acid, and rendering 
the salt soluble, the product weighing about 8 ozs. avoi. It requires 
about the same quantity for the others, but litmus paper is the surest 
and best test. 

N. St. Louis, Mo., March 19th, 1876. 




The theory that a ferric salt, as, for instance, the chloride, should 
directly combine, upon the principle of salification, with a normal 
monad salt of a polybasic vegetable acid, conflicts with all chemical 
laws, and neither the old dualistic hypothesis or the new typal theory 
can embrace or comprehend it. It is equally a failure on the plan of 
the compound salts, since double, triple and quadruple salts, properly 
so called, are respectively derived from dibasic, tribasic and tetrabasic 
acids when each unit of equivalency is separately saturated by a distinct 
basilous radical. It is likewise inadmissible of classification with an- 
other category of compound salts, the reverse of the preceding, which 
the writer denominates secondary, tertiary and quarternary, according 
to the atomicity of the basic radical, whose independent units of equiv- 
alency are separately saturated by corresponding acid radicals. 

By the laws of chemical affinity, ferric chloride in aqueous contact 
with normal potassium citrate, can no longer exist as such, because the 
ferric molecule, feebly replacing the basic hydrogen of the chlorhydric 
acid, finds itself superseded by a more perfect base, whose affinity is 
greater for the stronger chlorous than citric radical. Therefore potas- 
sium chloride and ferric citrate must result. A mixture of ferric chlo- 
ride and tripotassic citrate in certain proportions becomes green, and it 
was found that twice the equivalent amount of monad citrate was 
required to produce that result. Nothing was, however, mentioned of 
the intermediate change, and the belief was permitted to prevail that 
the final green is the only color that appears. The writer has, how- 
ever, noticed that the pale yellow ferric chloride solution assumes, in 
contact with the citrate, a preliminary red, which, by continued addi- 
tion of the citrate, gradually and completely changes into green. Ow- 
ing to the rather strong character of the citric radical and its tendency 

172 So-Called Tasteless Iron Compounds. \ Km ^^T' 

to form double salts, the latter property is exerted before entire double 
decomposition is effected ; hence, in order to insure this completely, 
sufficient monad citrate must be present to form double salt with the 
ferric citrate to be produced. This is very clearly seen from the fol- 
lowing equation : 

Fe 2 Cl 6 + 4 (K 3 C 6 H 5 7 )=6(KCl)+2(FeC 6 H 5 O r K 3 C 6 H 6 7 ). 

On evaporating the solution containing the mixture represented by 
the second member of this equation, a greenish-white granular mass is 
obtained. Since potassium chloride is not sufficiently soluble in alco- 
hol to effect a separation, the writer proposed to eliminate it by means 
of dialysis. A capacious parchment filter, containing the concentrated 
solution, was suspended in pure water, and after a few moments a 
strong exosmotic current of heavy liquid was seen descending from 
the apex of the cone. After about six hours, the powerful endosmotic 
current had nearly filled the dialyser which at first was scarcely one- 
third full. The diffusate had assumed a yellowish tint, showing that a 
trace of iron had also passed ; but on concentration the potassium 
chloride began to crystallize abundantly, and on evaporation to dryness 
a crystalline residue of potassium chloride was obtained, corresponding 
to over § of the theoretical yield. Having found the parchment filter 
too inconvenient, the writer again concentrated the liquid in the dia- 
lyser, placed it into a capacious wide-mouthed bottle, then tied over 
the mouth with pig's bladder previously washed in very dilute ammo- 
nia, and inverted the bottle into a vessel containing pure water. The 
dialysis now proceeded more satisfactorily, since the endosmotic cur- 
rent was nearly overcome by the tension of the atmosphere within the 
bottle. A slight increase of the volume of the diffusum was, how- 
ever, noticed, and the consequent compression of the enclosed air dis- 
tended the membrane considerably. 

The dialysis was discontinued after about 48 hours, having in the 
mean time changed the diffusate frequently. The colloidal remnant of the 
diffusum was then tested for chlorine with argentic nitrate, after strong 
acidulation with nitric acid, when only an opalescence appeared, show- 
ing that complete removal of the potassium chloride had taken place, 
whilst the green color of the residual liquid remained unchanged. 

The iodide was then subjected to dialysis. As the writer had already 
separated the potassium iodide by means of alcohol, a trial with dialy- 
sis seemed really superfluous ; but, as it had been intimated that free 

Am Ap°r^x876 a . rm '} So-Called Tasteless Iron Compounds. 173 

iodine made its appearance in the diffusate, the writer undertook the 
experiment. The compound was prepared, but it was observed that, 
owing to the carbonaceous character of the iron filings, a small quan- 
tity of iodine had been converted into iodhydric acid, which caused 
effervescence long after the iodine color had disappeared. By now 
adding the remaining third of the iodine, a liquid resulted which, by 
reason of part of its iodine being united to hydrogen, instead of iron 
yielded a mixture of ferrous iodide, free iodine and iodhydric acid, con- 
taining less iron than is required to form Fe 2 I 6 , by an amount equiv- 
alent to the iodhydric acid that was formed. On now treating this 
solution with potassium nitrate, that part of the iodine only was con- 
verted into potassium iodide which corresponded to Fe 2 I 6 , the rest 
remaining free. Hence, if such a solution is dialysed, free iodine must 
necessarily appear in the diffusate. Before dialysing this liquid the 
writer concentrated it by evaporation, and thus got rid of the free 
iodine. The solution, on being treated like that of the chloride, 
yielded, after a dialysis of four hours, a diffusate faintly yellow from a 
trace of iron, but containing no free iodine. This liquid, on evapora- 
tion, gave a white crystalline residue of potassium iodide, representing 
nearly f of the iodine originally used. The second diffusate rendered 
up the remaining complement. 

The officinal ferric pyrophosphate was next tried, but, although a 
yellowish diffusate appeared, no decided amount of residue was ob- 
tained ; accordingly it must be inferred that no crystalloid is present, 
and therefore dialysis cannot effect a separation. 

The ammonio-citroferric orthophosphate was then prepared (" Phar- 
macist," August, 1 871), and a concentrated solution precipitated by 
alcohol. The filtrate contained a trace of iron, and on evaporation 
yielded quite an appreciable syrupy residue, which, on the addition of 
ammonia in excess, congealed to a crystalline mass of triammonic 
phosphate. Dialysis of another portion of the concentrated solution 
gave a yellow diffusate, from which a small amount of saline residue 
was obtained. This result also points to a colloidal condition of the 
mixed compounds. 

The writer in his paper on Ferric Iodide (" Laboratory," February, 
1876) proposed to show that the officinal ferric pyrophosphate could 
be more conveniently and economically prepared by mixing certain 
proportions of ferric citrate and ammonium pyrophosphate. On the 

174 So-Called Tasteless Iron Compounds. {^ApS'iSS* 3 * 

same plan, it was also proposed to construct the orthophosphate by 
mixing ferric citrate with triammonic phosphate. Trial showed that 
mixtures of these two kinds resulted in products having the appearance 
of the preparations made by the usual methods. It was, however, 
ascertained that the precise imitation by inverse synthesis, was impos- 
sible, since, in each of these two cases, by the usual methods, an ex- 
cess of the ferric phosphates was absorbed. 

By an inspection of the officinal formula for ferric pyrophosphate, it 
was discovered that ferric pyrophosphate and triammonic citrate react 
upon each other in the proportion of one equivalent of ferric pyrophos- 
phate to three equivalents of triammonic citrate, producing ammonio- 
ferric pyrophosphate, ammonio-ferric citrate and free ferric citrate, 
thus : 2(Fe,3P 2 0,)+6(NH 4 ) 3 C 6 H 5 7 ) = Fe l3 P 2 7 -3(NH 4 ) 4 P 2 7 )+2 

(FeC 6 H 6 7 .(NH 4 ) 3 C 6 H 6 7 )+2(FeC 6 HA.) 

This shows that the officinal salt is a rather complex compound, and 

that the presence of uncombined ferric citrate is the cause of the pecu- 
liar tint described as apple green. It also explains why dialysis can 
not separate the mixture, as all three of the constituents are uncrys- 
tallizable, and, therefore, colloidal. The nearest approach to this 
compound, by means of inverse synthesis, is four equivalents of ferric 
citrate and three of ammonium pyrophosphate, which produces only 
ammonio-ferric pyrophosphate and ammonio-ferric citrate, thus : 8(Fc 
C 6 H 5 7 )+6((NH 4 ) 4 P 2 7 ) = Fe 4 3P 3 7 .3((NH 4 ) 4 P 2 7 ) + 4(FeC 6 H 5 7 . 
(NH 4 ),C 6 H 5 O r ) 

This is also equal to 2(Fe 4 3P 2 7 )+8((NH 4 ) 3 C 6 H 5 7 ), that is one 
equivalent of ferric pyrophosphate and four equivalents of triammonic 
citrate, and differs from the officinal by one equivalent of triammonic 
citrate in excess. 

Otherwise, the difference in the two compounds may also be shown 
as follows : 4<Fe 4 3P I 0,)+"ftNHj,C,H.O I )=F»«3PA+3(4(FeC, 
H 5 7 )+ 3 ((NH 4 ) 4 P 2 7 .) 

This indicates that the officinal salt is equal to one equivalent of 
ferric pyrophosphate and three of the imitation salt. 

The salt, or rather mixture produced by retrograde decomposition, 
has the bright green color peculiar to ammonio-ferric citrate, but addi- 
tion of a certain proportion of ferric citrate generates the apple green 
tint. By mixing two equivalents of ferric citrate and one of ammo- 
nium pyrophosphate a mixture exactly analogous to the officinal salt is 

Am xi°rn r ; a ^- rm *} So-Called Tasteless Iron Compounds. 175 

obtained, containing a like quantity of ammonio-ferric pyrophosphate 
mixed with twice as much ammonio-ferric citrate and free ferric citrate 
as the officinal salt contains. 

The writer thinks that in the next revision of the Pharmacopoeia the 
now officinal ammonio-pyrophosphate should be dropped and replaced 
by a sodium salt represented by two equivalents of ferric citrate and one 
of sodium pyrophosphate thus : 

2(FeC 6 H 5 ? )+Na 4 P 2 7 . 

Inverse synthesis can not exactly produce the ammonio-citroferric 
orthophosphate as no mixture of ferric citrate and triammonic phos- 
phate can approach any nearer than equal equivalents of each. The 
writer, however, believes that also in this case a sodium compound is 
better. Ferric citrate and disodic phosphate will produce perfectly 
green compounds in proportions that do not exceed 4 equivalents of 
the former to one of the latter. 

Ferric orthophosphate reacts upon triammonic citrate in the propor- 
tion of two equivalents of the first and one of the second, producing 
a solution which is brown red by transmitted and green by reflected 
light. Addition of citric acid, monammonic or diammonic citrate to 
this solution discharges the red color mostly, and forms a solution 
which is also green by transmitted light. By evaporating the red so- 
lution to a syrupy consistence and spreading it on plates of glass or 
porcelain beautiful brownish green scales are easily obtained. Similar 
treatment of the acidulated solution as readily yields greenish scales 
which cannot be distinguished by appearance from the officinal pyro- 
phosphate. The reddish brown color of this compound points to a 
basic condition due to the presence of free ferric hydrate, hence its 
formation may be written thus : 

4(FeP0 4 )+2(NH 1 ) 3 C 6 H 6 7 +3(OH 2 )=FeC 6 H 5 7 .(NH 4 ) 3 C 6 H 5 O r + 
2 (FeP0 4 ).(NH 4 ) 3 H 3 (P0 4 ) 2 +Fe(OH) 3 . 

This result assumes the generation of an ammonio-ferric orthophos- 
phate in which one equivalent each monammonic and diammonic phos- 
phate unite to form a neutral phosphate as follows : 

(NH 4 ) 2 HP0 4 +NH 4 H 2 P0 4 =(NH 4 ) 3 H 3 (P0 4 ) 2 . 

In such a mixture the writer attempted to dissolve freshly precipi- 
tated ferric orthophosphate, but failed, no solution taking place. How- 
ever a trial with ferric citrate succeeded perfectly, and a new salt of a 
brown-green color was obtained. Equal equivalents of ferric citrate 

176 So-Called Tasteless Iron Compounds. { Am A J p°rir;x876. rm ' 

and ferric phosphate unite to produce a soluble compound, the solution 
of which, when evaporated and scaled, yields a beautiful secondary salt, 
having the formula : Fe 2 (C 6 H 5 7 )(P0 4 ). 

This ferric citrophosphate is undoubtedly superior in various respects 
to the complex mixtures obtained from the ferric phosphates by the 
use of monad citrates. This salt is entirely ferruginous, and must 
therefore rank medicinally with the normal or primary ferric salts in 
which only one acid radical is combined. Its formation is also remark- 
able, in that it cannot be produced by treating ferric phosphate with 
citric acid, no combination taking place. If however ferric citrate is 
treated with a certain proportion of orthophosphoric acid a green liquid 
results, but if an excess of phosphoric acid is added all the iron is pre- 
cipitated as ferric phosphate, which the liberated citric acid fails to re- 
tain in solution. 

A convenient method of preparing ferric citrophosphate will be to 
treat a concentrated solution of ferric sulphate with an amount of di- 
sodic orthophosphate sufficient to convert half the iron into phosphate 
and then adding disodic carbonate in excess, washing the mixed phos- 
phate and oxy-carbonate by decantation and dissolving it in an amount 
of citric acid sufficient to convert the ferric oxy-carbonate into ferric 

Ferric chloride, sulphate, iodide, etc., remain unchanged in presence 
of ferric citrate, for the reason, that radicals of the same basicity can 
only form compound salts of this order ; hence, only ferric salts of 
tribasic acids can directly unite with ferric citrate. 

As a general rule all the amorphous ferric salts, or mixtures of them 
with other amorphous salts, can be obtained in transparent scales, but 
a mixture of an amorphous ferric salt with some other crystallizable 
salt, will invariably produce an opaque granular mass iususceptible of 
crystallizing or scaling. Therefore, if the result of a reaction between 
a ferric and some other salt, yields on drying, a granular mass ; a crys- 
talline constituent can positively be inferred, but if such a decomposi- 
tion results in a transparent, scaly compound, the absence of crystalline 
bodies is unfailingly pointed out. 

All the green compound ferric citrates when treated with alkalies in 
excess, become brown or red, and all such compounds which have been 
either reddened by alkalies or obtain this color as the result of the reac- 
tion which produced them, will become green after the addition of 

Am k J P °Xx876 arm } So-Called Tasteless Iron Compounds. 177 

citric acid or an acid monad citrate. Mixtures of ferric chloride, sul- 
phate, iodide, citrate, etc., with sufficient monad citrate acquire a uni- 
form green color. The officinal ferric pyrophosphate has a green color 
of a different shade, due to an excess of ferric citrate ; addition of 
triammonic citrate changes it to the green of the other mixtures. 
Ammonio-citroferric orthophosphate is'green only by reflected light and 
red (derived from the presence of free*ferric hydrate,) by transmitted ; 
addition of either di- or monammonic citrate causes a change to the 
green of the other mixtures. 

If ferrous salts have a marked affinity for nitrogen dioxide, much 
more have the ferric salts for nitrogen trioxide and tetroxide. Ferric 
salts retain these gases so firmly that prolonged boiling of their solutions 
fails to expel them, and even the dried compounds must be maintained 
at a comparatively high temperature Jfor a considerable time before 
complete separation is effected. In consideration of this fact the use 
of potassium chlorate in place of nitric acid is greatly preferable. 
Furthermore, the writer has ascertained the important fact (" Phar- 
macist," October, 1872,) that there is a chemical difference between 
ferric salts produced by nitric acid, and those generated by means of 
potassium chlorate. 

From the chemical and physical differences of the ammonio-ferric 
sulphates, obtained from the two modifications of ferric sulphate, the 
writer infers that through the action of nitric acid, probably aided by 
heat, the constitution of the ferric molecule itself is altered. For this 
reason the writer proposes to designate the normal condition of mole- 
cule as orthoferric, and that in the modified state as metaferric. All 
the orthoferric salts are distinguished by their lighter colors. Ammo- 
nio-orthoferric sulphate is beautifully yellow and of greater stability than 
the ammonio-metaferric sulphate, which has a violet color. Formerly, 
tincture of ferric chloride was prepared from a ferric hydrate, obtained 
by exposing ferrous carbonate to the air until the conversion was 
effected. The reputation of tincture of ferric chloride was built upon 
this preparation, which had not sustained the action of nitric acid or 
heat. Neither did this tincture possess the etherial odor which 
characterizes the new officinal tincture, in which the presence of 
nitrogen oxides generates ethyl nitrite, upon which this odor depends. 
Tincture of ferric chloride, recently prepared and treated with potas- 
sium citrate so as to form the so-called tasteless tincture, will also 


178 Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. { Am ^^l rm 

acquire the etherial odor, for the reason that the nitrogen oxides are 
unaffected by this addition, and perfectly free to react upon the alcohol. 

Tincture of ferric chloride, prepared with potasium chlorate, does 
not attain the etheral fragrance, and if ethyl chloride, also called 
hydrochloric ether, is generated, its by no means pleasant odor would 
certainly become perceptible. This tincture, however, has a pure, 
spirituous odor, and is otherwise analogous to the older tincture which 
represented an orthoferric salt. 


The fifth regular meeting of the session was held March 21st, 1876, Dillwyn 
Parrish in the chair. The minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved. 

Prof. Maisch donated to the cabinet a cone from the Pinus pinea, of Southern Eu- 
rope, being the same species which yields the pine-nuts exhibited at a former meet- 

Henry Trimble exhibited an unknown substance, which had been sent from Mary- 
land to this city, to be sold for powdered ergot. It has no resemblance to that drug. 

Prof. Remington read a paper on a singular reaction occurring in a medicine com- 
posed of syrups of wild-cherry and squill, spirit of nitre, tincture of lobelia and 
sulphate of morphia, which turned green on standing, as was stated in a letter re- 
ceived from J. W. Hall, of Nashville, Tenn. The color reaction did not take place 
immediately, but after some hours, and appears to be due to the presence of traces 
of iron in spirit of nitre and acetic acid, from which the syrup of squill had been 
made. The conclusion arrived at by the experimenter was, that extreme nicety 
should be observed in the apparatus for handling such liquids. Prof. Remington 
proposes to continue his experiments, and report at the next meeting. 

Dr. Pile had frequently observed cases in which a variation in the order of mix- 
ing the ingredients would determine different colored solutions. 

J. T. Shinn had been surprised to find, upon attempting to prepare a prescription 
containing sulphate of iron, sulphate of magnesium and chloride of Sodium, a pre- 
cipitation of a red iron compound would take place, and nothing but the addition 
of sulphuric acid would prevent it. 

Dr. Pile had recently seen a prescription for Pulvis Membranse Galli ; the opin- 
ion was held that it was a mystification symbolic of pepsin. 

J. C. Biddle submitted samples of powdered squill, the usual caking of which is 
prevented by the use of sugar of milk in the proportion of 1 part to 3 of the squill. 
The first sample had bee prepared 18 months ago, and had received such care only 
as is customary with a dispensing bottle. The other had been exposed to the air 
on a paper for one month, without having lost its pulverulent condition. The use 
of sugar of milk for this purpose had been suggested to him by W. F. Bender, 
Apothecary to the Philadelphia Hospital. 

Am AprT^76? rm *} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 179 

W. H. Mattern exhibited a suppository mould made of plaster-of-paris and 
suppositories made in it, and stated that it worked satisfactorily. The mould was 
made in a manner similar to that proposed on page 5 of "Am. Journ. Pharm. 

Dr. Miller read a paper, by Walter E. Bibby, entitled, " The Division of 
Poisons." (See page 167.) 

Prof. Maisch approved of the suggestion, and said the method is recognized in 
the Pharmacopoeia Germanica, for preparing powdered narcotic extracts, and in 
stores where much dispensing is done, it is customary to keep many poisonous 
articles, triturated to a uniform powder with milksugar, and many salts in solution 
of a definite strength. 

J. T. Shinn desired to know the experience of the members in preserving solu- 
tions for hypodermic use. Prof. Remington had tried many of the methods that 
had been recommended, but still met with difficulties, and, as these solutions are, 
from the nature of circumstances, at times, liable to cause irritation, had abandoned 
the idea of keeping a stock ready made. Prof. Maisch called attention to the 
remarks of Prof. C Johnson, of Baltimore, in " Am. Journ. Pharm.," 1873, P- 200, 
suggesting the use of sulphurous acid. 

Compressed pills being spoken of, Prof. Remington said the paper prepared by 
him, and read before the American Pharmaceutical Association, at Boston, was 
made public two weeks before Mr. Dunton had procured his patent, and that his 
second paper was published before that gentleman procured his second patent. J. 
T. Shinn reminded the members that compressed pills were no new thing, he having 
seen some made more than 20 years ago. 

Prof. Maisch desired to have, if possible, our meetings continued over the 
coming summer. 

The thanks of the meeting were voted to the donors and exhibitors. On motion, 
adjourned to meet on April 18th, 1876, at 3 \ P. M. 

William McIntyre, Registrar. 


Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. — On Monday, February 28th, the 
fifty-fifth course of lectures was closed, and the examinations commenced on the 
following day, lasting until Friday, March 4th, one set of the following questions 
being given to the candidates on each day, the written answers being required with- 
in five hours : 


1. What is Chlorine ? Give a method by which it may be obtained, state its 
properties and mention the officinal articles of the U. S. and Br. Pharmacopoeias, 
in forming of which gaseous Chlorine is used. 

2. What compounds of Lead are officinal ? State the mode of preparation of each 
and give a formula (in symbols) of the reaction of any one of them. 

3. What are the present chemical and officinal names of the Carbonates of Sodium ? 
Give and explain the methods by which they are produced, and state the character- 
istic properties of each and tests of their purity. 

] 80 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. { Am $%; $6™' 

4. What are the officinal names (U. S. and Br. P.) of Muriatic Acid ? Give and 
explain the method by which it is produced, the forms in which it is used in medi- 
cine and pharmacy and any impurities found in the acid of commerce. 
^5. What compounds of Silver are officinal? Give their mode of preparation, 
their properties and adulterations. 

6. What Tartrates are officinal ? Give the mode of preparation common to 
nearly all, and any special cautions and reasons therefor required in some. 

7. How is Corrosive Sublimate prepared ? Explain the process, give its compo- 
sition, properties and officinal names. 

%:.■ 8. By what tests may the salts of Magnesium, Zinc and Cadmium be distin- 
tinguished from each other? 

9. What are the Antidotes for the Mineral Acids, and how do they act ? 

10. Under what circumstances is Water liable to become contaminated with 
Lead ? State what salts, often present in river water, will prevent this contamina- 


1. Describe briefly the development of the Axis of Plants, and how its growth 
differs from that of the leaves. 

2. Give the name, natural order and habitat of the plant yieLding the officinal 
Hhatany Root. What are the physical characteristics, chemical constituents and 
medicinal properties of the drug, and how may it be distinguished from the roots of 
■other species of the same genus ? 

3. Name the plants, with their natural order, yielding the European and the 
American Veratrum ; describe the growth, structure and dose of the officinal por- 
tion, and state in what respects the two drugs differ from each other in their physi- 
cal and chemical properties. 

4. Give a brief description of the most important characteristics of the officinal 
varieties of Cinchona ; name the plants from which they are obtained, and the alka 
loids predominating in each variety. 

5. Give the name, natural order and habitat of the Aconite Plant; describe the 
officinal parts, give their doses and name the characteristic alkaloids and acid found 
in them. From what common acid may the latter be obtained by the influence of 
heat ? 

6. What are Cloves ? Give the name, natural order and habitat of the plant 
yielding the drug, its structural characteristics, and approximately the percentage of 
its most important constituents. 

7. Hops. Give the name, natural order and part of the plant used ; describe the 
drug, and state to which portion and which constituents the medical properties are 
mainly due. 

8. Give the name, natural order and habitat of the plant yielding Colchicum 
Seed, and the time of their collection. Describe them, and give their medicinal 
properties and dose, and the characteristic tests for their alkaloid. 

9. What are Turpentines, and what causes the opaque sediment in some varie- 
ties ? State how the different kinds are procured and how the officinal resins of 
Coniferae are prepared. 

10. Give the characteristics of the natural order of Lobeliacea, and describe the 
officinal herb of this order, giving name and habitat. 


i. Define Specific Gravity, and state its uses in Pharmacy. A bottle holds half 
a pint of the liquid adopted as the sp. gr. standard, it holds at the same temperature 
4,557 grains of an officinal liquid ; what is that liquid? Show the method of obtain-' 
ing your answer. 

Am Ai°rii"'i876. rm '} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 181 

2. What is the value in English weights and measures of the Gramme, Litre and 
Metre ? Give the names and value in the metrical system of the prefixes usedjn 
multiplying and dividing the Gramme. -~ j. 

3. Define the process of Percolation. State the reason why certain kinds of drugs- 
are required to be finely powdered and others coarsely powdered, naming examples 
of each. 

4. Give three officinal methods of preparing Medicated Waters, illustrating each 
with an example from the " Pharmacopoeia." I 

5. What is an Emulsion ? Give the ingredients in Mistura Asafoetidas, Mistura 
Chloroformi and Mistura Ferri Comp. State what chemical reaction takes place in 
the latter preparation. 

6. Give the ingredients in the following officinal preparations : Compound In- 
fusion of Gentian, Aromatic Syrup of Rhubarb, Compound Tincture of Benzoin, 
Compound Powder of Rhubarb, Wine of Opium. 

7. Why are the following substances used in their respective preparations ? Car- 
bonate of Magnesium in Syrupus Zingiberis j Boiling Hot Water in Unguentum 
Potassii Iodidi ; Compound Spirit of Lavender in Liquor Potassii Arsenitis ; Nitric 
Acid in Liquor Ferri Chloridi ; Aromatic Sulphuric Acid in Infusum Cinchona? 

8. Give the process for preparing Atropia, the test for it and its principal use in 

9. State the proportions and doses of the officinal Liquid Preparations of Opium. 

10. What are the best tests for recognizing Gallic Acid, Conia, Meconic Acid, 
Strychnia and Quinia ? 


1. Why is Aqua Ammonias used in the preparation of Purified Muriate of Am- 
monia ; Muriatic Acid in Purified Animal Charcoal 5 Soap in Pills of Aloes ; and 
Sulphate of Potassium in Dover's Powder ? Give the reason why Blistering Cerate 
is kept in the liquid state for half an hour.. 

2. From what plant are Belladonna Leaves and Root obtained ? and what alka- 
loid do they contain ? Give an outline of the formula for the production of all the 
officinal preparations, with the exception of the alkaloid, and the doses of those used 

3. Describe Mercury as found in the shops ; state four of the different prepara- 
tions it enters into in the metallic state ; and specify the ingredients contained in 

4. Give the locality, natural order and officinal name of the plant yielding Cop- 
aiba. State how it is obtained and what are its two principal constituents. Name 
its two officinal preparations. 

5. State what doses of the following maybe administered, and name the antidotes 
for poisonous doses of the same : Extract of Opium, Nitrate of Silver, Lupulin, 
Sulphate of Sodium, Sulphate of Iron, Acetate of Lead. 

6. State the proper methods of detecting adulterations of Oil of Wintergreen 
with Alcohol, Chloroform with Alcohol, Oil of Lemon with Castor Oil, Yellow 
Wax with Paraffin, and Iodide of Potassium with Bromide of Potassium. 

7. State the composition and correct officinal title of the following : Brown 
Mixture, Seidlitz Powders, Compound Extract of Colocynth and Compound Cath- 
artic Pills. Write the Pharmacopoeia formula for the latter in Latin, avoiding 
abb reviations. 

8. State the formula for preparing Liquor Ferri Subsulphatis. Give its color, 
consistency, taste and specific gravity. Does it mix in all proportions with Water 
and Alcohol without decomposition ? What effect is produced by the addition of 
Aqua Ammonia? ? By what popular name is this solution known ? 


Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 

f Am Jour. Pharm. 
t April, 1876. 

9. State whether the following prescriptions A. B. C. D. are proper to be dis 
pensed, and if not, give the reason why ? 

R — Strychnia? Sulphatis, gr. xxx. 

Syrup. Zingiber., . . f^i. 

Aquae, . . . . fjv. 

Sig. A teaspoonful thrice daily. 


For Dysentery. 
R— Pulv. Opii. 
Pulv. Ipecac. 

Hydrarg. Bichlorid : . aagr.iii. 
Pulv. Acacias. 

Syrup. . . . aaq.s. 
Misce et fiat massa in pil. iii dividenda. 
Sig One to be taken at bed-time. 

10. Translate the following : 


R — Quinias Sulphatis 

Ferri Sulphatis Exsiccati ad,gr.\. 
Extract. Nuc. Vomicae, gr.| 
M. ft. pilula ; dentur tales doses No. xx. 


R — Ammoniae Muriat., • % 
Antim. et Potass. Tart., 
Tine. Opii Deod., 
Mist. Glycyrrh. Comp., 
Misce flat mist. 

Sig. A dessert spoonful every three 


R — Hydrarg. Chlorid. Mit., 

Pulv. Ipecac. Comp , 

Sig. Take at bed-time. 



Transpose this into Troy Weight. 


ft — Aloes Pulv 2. 

Hydrarg. Chloridi Mit. 0.75 
Resin. Podophylli 0.125 

M. ft. pil. No. xii. 

The specimeus submitted for recognition 
were as follows : 



R — Extract. Belladonnae, 
Tinct. Ferri Chloridi, 
Syrupi, . . 
Mucilag. Acaciae, 


Sig. Take a teaspoonful on going to 

N. B. — Give your opinion of this pre- 
scription, and state what will be its con- 
dition when compounded. 


Write out a prescription having for a 
basis four fluid ounces Syrup of Tolu, 
containing in each teaspoonful one- 
eighth of a grain of Sulphate of Morphia 
and four minims of Tincture of Aconite 

, 15 minutes being allowed for each set, 

Acid, nitromuriaticum 
Potassii bromidum. 
Potassii nitras. 
Sodii carbonas. 
Sodii hyposulphis. 
Ammonii chloridum. 
Magnesii sulphas. 
Cupri sulphas. 
Plumbi acetas. 

Materia Medica. Pharmacy. 

Calumba. Ergotae pulvis 

Scilla. Infus. Rosae comp. 

Guaiaci lignum. Acetum Scillae. 

Juglans. Syrup. Pruni Virg. 

Hyoscyami folia. Ext. Taraxaci fluid. 

Senna, Bombay. Liquor Calcis. 

Anisum. Spir. Ammoniae arom. 

Sinapis alba. Ung. Zinc oxidi. 

Sabadilla. Acid, tannicum. 

Kino. Cinchoniae Sulph. 

The following gentlemen, having passed a successful examination, were recom- 
mended for the degree of Graduate in Pharmacy (Ph.G.). The names are in the 
order of merit, as ascertained from the examinations : 

Names. State. Subject of Thesis. 

1 Joseph LeRoy Webber, Massachusetts. Assay of Atropia. 

2 Henry Schroeder, Illinois. Triosteum. 

3 John Ritter, " Syrup of Wild Cherry Bark. 

Examining Committee. 

Potassii chloras. 

Sodii boras. 

Uva ursi. 


Pulv. Jalapae Cp. 

Mist. Potassii Citr. 

Tinct. Cinchonae comp. 

Tinct. Opii Camph. 

Extr. Sennse fluid. 

Ung. Hydrarg. oxidi rub. 

A V P n } i"'i8 7 h 6 arm '} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations 183 

4 Louis Emanuel, Pennsylvania. 

5 Albert Hapgood Van Gorder, Ohio. 

6 Isaac Rouland Diller, Illinois. 

7 James Oscar Burge, Kentucky. 

8 William Poole, Delaware. 

9 John Alfred Witmer, Pennsylvania. 
10 Henry Trimble, " 

William Duffield Robinson, " 

Joseph John Brown, Ohio. 

John Chrysostom Martin, Pennsylvania. 
William Peiffer Weiser, " 
Howard Buckman Sides, " 

16 Walter Adolphus Taylor, Georgia. 

17 Theodore Corson Wheaton, New Jersey. 

18 Louis Von Cotzhausen, Wisconsin. 

19 William Wesley Trout, Pennsylvania, 

20 Francis Marion Murray, Ohio. 

21 Daniel Conrad Gentsch, " 

22 Wm. Norwood Kelly Boileau, Pennsylvania. 

23 Thomas Albert Huston, Ohio. 

24 Hugh White, Pennsylvania. 

25 Ebenezer Miller Wells, Mississippi. 

26 William Ruff, Ohio. 

27 Charles Augustus Brotherline, Pennsylvania. 

28 William Henry Righter, Jr. Delaware. 

29 George Joseph Mitsch, 

30 Flavius Saunders Case, 

31 Hugo Franklin Baur, 

32 Walter Theron Baker, 

33 Charles William Tobey, 

34 Emil Louis Boerner, 

35 Charles Albert Daniel, 

36 Joseph Collard Rogers, 

37 Carl Swante Nicanor Hallberg, 

38 Clarence Henderson Risk, 

39 Henry Tower Hayhurst, 

40 Carl Heinrich Marquardt, 

41 George Blake Holden, 

42 Philip Jacob Laver, 

43 John Behlar, 

44 Francis Abraham Roepper, 

45 Charles Griffith, 

46 Charles Moenkemoeller, 

47 Andrew Richard Porter, 



New Jersey. 




District Columbia 

West Virginia. 

48 Charles Williams Warrington, New Jersey. 

49 Joseph Wayne Merritt, " 

Glycerin as an Excipient for 
Pill Masses. 

Asarum Canadense as an In- 
digenous Aromatic. 

Tinctura Ferri Chloridi. 

The Chemical Laboratory. 

The Strength of Saccharated 


Benzoic Acid as an Antiseptic. 
Tinctura Cinchona Composita. 
The Alcoholic Strength of Wine. 
Pharmaceutical Science. 
Eucalyptus Globulus. 
Chemical Action. 
Extractum Gossypii Radicis 

Carya Porcina. 

Coumarin— its uses and sources. 
Aqua Medicata. 
Agave Americana. 

Wax — Adulteration and Phar- 
maceutical uses. 
Polygonum Punctatum. 
Pyrethrum Roseum. 
Cinch Quinine. 

Phosphorus Pills. 

Preservation of Syrup of Ipe- 

Patent Medicines and an Ana- 
lysis of Face Lotion. 

Salicylic Acid. 

Mucilago Acacia. 

Medicinal Waters. 


Ricinus Communis. 

Preparations of Calamus. 

Domestic Remedies. 

Pharmaceutical Notes. 

Dispensing Poisons. 

Effervescing Preparations of 
Sodium Tartrate. 

Iris Versicolor. 

Oleum Morrhua. 

Solubility of Drugs. 

.Pimpinella Anisum. 

Iron and its Properties. 

A Substitute for Volatile Lini- 

Cinchona and its Alkaloids. 
Sium Latifolium. 
The Privacy oj the Prescrip- 
tion Department. 
Salicylic Acid. 

184 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. { 

Am. Jour. Pharm 
April, 1876. 

50 Benjamin Thomas Creighton, Ohio. 

51 Clayton Kerper Smith, Pennsylvania. 

52 Charles Drum Lippincott, 

53 Harry Calvin Watt, 

54 Frank Edward Stewart, 

New York. 

55 Alphonso Albert Willits Bley, Pennsylvania. 

56 Theodric Linthicum, Arkansas, 

57 Richard Miller Sommers, New Jersey. 

58 Henry Louis Von Wittkamp,Jr.Pennsylvania. 

59 George Washington Kram, " 

60 Charles Eugene Hornberger, Germany. 

61 Alvin Henry Keller, Pennsylvania. 

62 Ernest William Herrman, " 

63 John Dowling Groves, Pennsylvania. 

64 Philipp Henry Dilg, Wisconsin. 

65 William Fullerton Fleming, Canada. 

66 Theophilus Niblow Corbyn, Pennsylvania. 

67 Oliver Paschal Hooper, Maryland. 

68 John Henry Evans, Pennsylvania. 

69 Franklin Pierce Louderbough, Delaware. 

70 John William Sonnick, New York. 

71 Willis Brenton, Pennsylvania. 

72 Thomas Swaim Armstrong, New Jersey. 

73 C. Massey Cresson Durborow, Pennsylvania. 

74 George Lewis Sandt, 

75 Robert August Koempel, 

76 Jacob Loudenslager Kolp, 

77 Irvin Railey, 

78 William Henry Robbins, 

79 Howard Granville Shinn, 

80 Frederick Stryker Boisnot, 

81 Leon Joseph K. Graber, 

82 Edmund Rudolph Gatchel, 

83 Louis Philip Carbonell, 

84 David Abraham Rosenthal, 

85 John William Quinn, 

86 Zachary Taylor Anstett, 

87 Jeremiah Dull McFerren, 

88 Ezra Heiry Gingrich, 

89 Albert Livingston Thorn, 

90 James Henry Sheridan, 


New Jersey. 





New Jersey. 

91 Morrison Wright Webb, Ohio. 

92 Winfield Scott Taylor, 

93 Daniel Albert Bowen, 

94 Francis Henry Poley, 

New Jersey. 

The Culture of Tobacco in Ohio. 

The Relation and Commercial 
Value of Fluid Extracts. 

Fixed and Volatile Oils. 

Fluid Extract of Ipecacuanha. 

Lac Vaccinum — its Adultera- 
tion and Preparation. 


Monobromated Camphor. 
Menispermum Canadense. 

Disguising Disagreeable Reme- 

The Discovery of Glass. 

The Science of Pharmacy in the 

Tin Scrap. 
On Iodine. 

Euphorbia Ipecacuanha. 
Cortex Liriodendron Tulipi- 

Proprietary Medicines. 



Solubility and Uses of Salicylic 

Syrupus Rhei Aromaticus. 


Guar ana. 

The Deterioration of the Drug- 
gists'" Stock. 
Styrax Benzoin. 
Red Wine. 

Gelsemium Sempervirens. 
The Apothecary. 
Turiones Asparagi. 
Convolvulus Panduratus. 

Opium, its Uses and Abuses. 

Acidum Lacticum. 

The Wholesale and Retail 



Responsibilities and Require- 
ments of a Pharmacist. 
Chemical Changes. 

Manufacture and Uses\ of Ox- 
ide of Zinc in Medicine. 

Patience and Care vs. Knowl- 

Dispensing Pharmacy. 


Aesculus Hippocastanum. 

Am Ai°rir;i^6. rm: } Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 1 8 5 

95 Milbourn Asbury Toulson, Maryland. Arnica Montana. 

96 Robert McNeil, Jr., Pennsylvania. Prescriptions. 

97 Otto Fiirchtegott Koehler, Germany. Jodinum. 

98 Charles Lashell, Pennsylvania. Botany. 

99 Isaiah Henry Schuyler Kindig, " Percolation. 

100 William Wood Stockton, New Jersey. Trifolium Pratense. 

101 Charles Green Harris, Iowa. Tinctura Ferri Chloridi. 

102 Wilbur Winthrop Fry, Pennsylvania. A Thesis Dedicated to the Cen- 

tennial Class. 

103 Allen Spengler, " Preservation of Syrups. 

104 John Rufus Barr, ». . ■ " Triticum Repens. 

Mr. Chipman Botsford, Canada (Podophyllum peltatum), passed the examina- 
tion, entitling him to the Certificate of Proficiency in Chemistry and Materia Med- 
ica, which was granted by this College for the first time. 

The Academy of Music was well filled with an appreciative audience on the 
evening of March 14th, to witness the Commencement ceremonies, which were 
enlivened by excellent music from the Germania Orchestra, George Bastert, Con- 
ductor. Many Commissioners representing foreign countries at the approaching 
Centennial Exposition were present upon the stage. The President of the College, 
Dillwyn Parrish, conferred the degree upon the above-named gentlemen, after which 
Professor Bridges presented the Procter prize, which had been awarded to Mr. 
Joseph LeRoy Webber, of Springfield, Mass. The requirements for obtaining 
this prize have been fixed by the Board of Trustees as follows : The candidate must 
have obtained the highest average in the class 5 the examinations in each one of the 
three branches and by the Examining Committee, as well as the recognition of spe- 
cimens, must have been attended with such success as to merit, in each case, the 
predicate very satisfactory j in addition thereto, the candidate must have presented a 
satisfactory thesis. The prize consists of a gold medal and a certificate, with an 
appropriate inscription and a representation of the medal. 

The valedictory address was delivered by Professor Remington, after which Mr. 
T. S. Armstrong, on behalf of the graduating class, presented to the College a 
complete polariscope attachment for the oxy-hydrogen lantern in use for illustrating 
the lectures. Vice-President Chas. Bullock received the gift on behalf of the Board 
of Trustees. 

A large number of bouquets, books and other presents, which had been sent upon 
the stage, were distributed at the close of the exercises. 

The Alumni Association of the Philadelphia Collfge of Pharmacy 
held its annual meeting on Thursday, March 9th, when the following officers were 
elected : President, G. W. Kennedy ; Vice Presidents, E. M. Boring and Samuel 
Campbell ; Recording Secretary, Wallace Procter ; Corresponding Secretary, Chas. 
L. Mitchell ; Treasurer, Edw. C. Jones ; to fill vacancies in the Executive Board, 
A. W. Miller, M.D., and Howard G. Jones ; Trustee of the Sinking Fund, Thos. 
S. Wiegand. 

On the evening of March 13th, the Association tendered a reception to the gradu- 
ating clrss and their friends, at the hall of the College, the retiring President, Dr. 
A. W. Miller, in the chair. The recent graduates, having been formally admitted 

i 86 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations, { Ara xiXi8 7 h 6 arm " 

to membership, Chas. L. Eberle, Ph.G., delivered the annual address. The alumni 
prizes were then distributed, Mr. J. L. Webber receiving the gold medal, and 
Messrs. H. Schroeder, L. Emanuel and J. Ritter the Alumni Certificates, for hav- 
ing received the highest average in Chemistry, Materia Medica and Pharmacy. To 
give to the older graduates and other friends present an opportunity of witnessing 
the working of the oxyhydrogen lantern as a means of instruction, Professor Rem- 
ington exhibited with it a number of crystallizations and color reactions, and Prof. 
Maisch photographic representations of starches and other pulverulent drugs, and, 
with the microscope attachment, sections of a number of drugs. Mr. Bullock enter- 
tained the company by showing a large number of scenes of this and of foreign 

The New York College of Pharmacy held its Forty-sixth annual com- 
mencement on the evening of March 21st, at Chickering Hall, when President P. 
Balluff conferred the degree of Graduate in Pharmacy upon the following gentle- 
men : 

Adolph Basora, Santiago, Cuba, Alexander M. Linnett, Newark, N. J., 

Lewis Blumauer, Portland, Oregon, William Maass, Ixonia Center, Wis., 
Clarence F. Booth, Newport, R. I, Thomas J. Magee, New York, 

James P, Boyle, New Canaan, Conn., Ewen Mclntyre, Jr., New York, 
Augustus R. Castano, New York, James Millar, New York, 

H. Lieber Coit, Newark, N. J., James K. Morrill, Holyoke, Mass.> 

Albert Dovell, Newark, N. J., Adrian Paradis, Union Hill, N. J., 

George Eberhardt, Rutherford Park, N.J. , George F. Payne, Macon, Ga , 
Frank H. Falkenreck, Elizabeth, N. J., Henry F. Pembleton, Brooklyn, N. Y., 
George C. Fountain, Jersey City, N. J., Benjamin F. Quackinbush, New York, 
Otto T. Frohwein, Elizabeth, N. J., Gustavus Rothe, Jersey City, N. J., 
Albert T. Gunther, Newark, N. J., Henry C. Schranck, Milwaukee, Wis., 
John C. Heidingsfelder, New York, Peter J. Schumann, Atlanta, Ga., 
Adolph Henning, Union Hill, N. J., Theodore A. Spear, New York, 
Frederick Huehne, Rondout, N. Y., Louis L. Staehle, Newark, N. J., 
Gilbert P. Knapp, New York, Henry A. Striker, Amsterdam, N. Y., 

Otto G. Laue, Passaic, N. J., Theodore Thieme, Fort Wayne, Ind., 

Henry Lehman, New York, Joseph E. Tomas, Brooklyn, N. Y., 

William J. Liell, New York, William H. Townsend, New York, 

John H. Wenzel, New York. 
The Alumni Prizes were awarded by Professor Bedford, after which Professor 
E. Curtis, M.D., delivered an address, and Mr. H. L. Coit the Valedictory Ad- 
dress on behalf of the graduates. 

The Alumni Association of the College of Pharmacy of the City of 
New York held its fifth annual meeting, Wednesday evening, March 15th, 1876, 
President Geo. C. Close in the chair. Some fifty members were present, and nine- 
teen of the class of 1876 joined the Association. 

The President, the oldest living graduate, read his annual address, and gave an 

Am A& r 'i8 7 h 6! rm '} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 187 

interesting account of the apothecaries and doctors who were prominent in this city 
when he graduated in 1831. 

The Treasurer, Theobald Frohwein, reported $205.80 cash on hand, and $46.42 
in the reserved fund. An election of officers was then held, which resulted in the 
choice of the following gentlemen : President, Ewen Mclntyre. Vice-Presidents 
—Starr H. Huebler, Charles A. Robbins, Ph.D., Henry C. Schranck. Secretary, 
Prof. P. W. Bedford. Treasurer, Theobald Frohwein. Registrar, Lucien M. 
Royce. To fill vacancies in the Executive Board — Byron F. Mclntyre, Thomas 
F. Main and Edward W. Runyon. Delegates to the American Pharmaceutical 
Association— Geo. C. Close, Theo. Frohwein, B. F. Mclntyre, S. H. Ambler and 
L. M. Royce. 

The President appointed the following Committees : On Papers and Queries — 
Messrs. Creuse, B. F. Mclntyre and Runyon. On Publication — Messrs. Royce, 
Creuse and Ambler. 

A letter of greeting from the Alumni Association of the St. Louis -College of 
Pharmacy was read, and the Secretary was directed to write an appropriate reply, 
reciprocating the kind feelings expressed. 

Prof. Bedford offered a resolution that the Association give in the future three 
medals, of gold, silver and bronze, to the students rating, respectively, first, second 
and third at the annual examination. The resolution was passed unanimously. 

Mr. Creuse read a paper entitled "A New Explosive Mixture," which was refer- 
red for publication. 

The meeting then adjourned to the College cabinet, where a bountiful collation 
had been prepared. 

Prof. Bedford, on behalf of the Association, welcomed the class of 1876, who 
were the guests of the evening, telling them that on this occasion they might forget 
the caution taught by their motto, ca^vendo tutus, as there were no poisons here. 
After an hour very pleasantly spent, the company separated, well pleased with the 
work of the Committee on Entertainment. 

The next meeting of the Association will be held in June, when the officers elect 
will be installed. 

The New York Alumni Association of the Philadelphia College of 
Pharmacy held its monthly meeting March 7th, President Levering in the chair. 
Mr. Mitchell was elected a member. Nominations were made for officers, the 
election being held at the next meeting, April 4th. 

Mr. Wood stated that hydrobromate of quinia, often erroneously called bromide 
of quinia, has been attracting attention of late, because of its ready solubility. 
Mr. Wellcome called attention to a paper read by Mr. Bullock, before the Ameri- 
can Pharmaceutical Association, in which formulas are given for the preparation of 
many bromides and hydrobromates, the latter term being used for the compounds 
with alkaloids. Having been called upon to prepare a concentrated solution of 
quinia, to be used hypodermically for a patient unable to endure any other method 
of administration, he made a solution of arabinate of quinia, three minims con- 
taining one grain of the salt, which was used with convenience, causing no unpleas- 
ant effects locally, and giving satisfactory results in its action. 



{Am. Jour. Pharm 
April, 1876. 

The subject of ointments was discussed at some length in relation to a suitable 
substitute for lard or simple ointment. Mr. Ritter (of the class of 1876, present 
on this occasion), had found a combination of white wax and castor oil to be not 
readily impaired, and furnishing a good substitute for compounds very susceptible 
to change. Glycerite of starch and glycerin, solidified with gelatin, were also 
discussed in this connection. 

Mr. Wellcome reported the case of Hon. L. Porter, of Minnesota, who drank 
from a bottle supposed to contain currant wine, but when too late discovered that 
he had taken a draught of solution of corrosive sublimate, kept for killing bed-bugs, 
and containing about 15 grains of the poison. The administration of white of 
eggs, lard, &c, under the direction of skilled physicians, proved unavailing, and the 
patient died after five days 1 suffering. 

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy. — At the annual meeting, held March 
6th, the following officers were elected : President, Samuel M. Colcord 5 Vice-Pres- 
idents — Charles A. Tufts, Thomas L. Jenks 5 ^Corresponding Secietary, George F. 
H. Markoe; Recording Secretary, Daniel G. Wilkins; Treasurer, E. L. Patch j 
Auditor, W. S. Folger ; Trustees — James S. Melvin, Henry W. Lincoln, B. F. 
Stacy, I. T Learey, I. B. Patten, Henry Canning, S. C. Tozzer and George H. 
Cowdin. The affairs of the College were reported to be in a good condition. A 
new charter has just been obtained from the Legislature. 

The St. Louis College of Pharmacy held its tenth annual commencement 
March 23, when President F. X. Crawley conferred the degree of Graduate in 
Pharmacy upon the following gentlemen : Flor. C. Schmidt, Robt. Hunstock, A. 
Ph. Kaltwasser, J. N. Washington, F. Westmann, O. E. H. Truetler, L. Ries- 
meyer, Chas. Luedeking, N. Guhmann, Jr., Paul Nake, Gust. Brandau, H. Schwarz, 
Herm. Brandt, Jr., and H. Harnisch. 

Prizes were awarded by Prof. Good, and valedictories delivered by Prof. Fay on 
behalf of the faculty, and by Mr. Washington on behalf of the class. 

The graduates were then received by the Alumni Association, and the exercises 
terminated with an oration by Francis Hemm, Ph.G. 


The Asserted Presence of Tannin in Gentian Root. — In a paper bearing 
this caption, published in our last number, we took occasion to refer to the report 
on a paper read before the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, from which we 
were led to infer that the assertion concerning the presence of tannin in gentian 
was mainly based on the incompatibility of the tincture of chloride of iron and 
compound tincture of gentian. Mr. E. L. Patch has kindly sent us the paper read 
by him, from which it is evident that the report referred to above was very incom- 
plete, and that the experiments with gentian alone were in reality the most impor- 
tant of his investigations, the results of which agree entirely with those related in 
our last number. Mr. Patch had not overlooked the fact that orange peel produces 

Editorial. 189 

an inky coloration with salts of iron ; he ascertained, even, that its infusion yields a 
slight precipitate with gelatin; he likewise noticed that the same reagent produces 
with infusion of gentian a slight precipitate, which at first sight may readily be mis- 
taken for tannate of gelatin, since, after draining, it will be colored nearly black by 
iron salts ; this color, however, is completely removed by washing with cold water. 
A very interesting experiment, which, in our opinion, likewise disproves the pres- 
ence of tannin, was performed by Mr. Patch, by exhausting moistened gentian with 
washed ether and evaporating ; the resulting extract was treated with alcohol, and 
this solution was found to behave to iron salts in a similar manner as tannin ; yet, 
on throwing it into water and filtering, the clear liquid, which should contain any 
tannin present, was not precipitated by gelatin. In his paper Mr. Patch stated that 
he did not regard his experiments as concluded, but would continue his investiga- 
tions. Since then, Mr. L. D. Drury has read a paper before the Massachusetts Col- 
lege of Pharmacy, in which he arrived at the same conclusion as the paper pub- 
lished in our last number. 

The Pill Question. — On February 18th, we received a communication from 
Mr. Dunton, which we could not notice in our last number, and in which he objects 
to the conclusions arrived at by Mr. Remington in his paper read before the Amer- 
ican Pharmaceutical Association. The points relating to the question at issue are 
contained in the following: 

In 1869 I called the attention of the medical profession to the advantages of the compressed pill, viz. 

First. No extraneous substances are added to produce cohesion, such as gum, sugar, starch, soap, 

&c, which are usually employed in making up pill masses, and often detract from the solubility of the pill, 

while they add to its bulk. 

Second. Their form is lenticular instead of round ; they consequently present a larger surface to be 

acted upon, and are more promptly effective. Experience has shown, also, that pills in this shape are 

very easily swallowed. 

This statement in reference to the solubility of the pill was made after a full examination of the sub- 
ject, by frequent comparative tests, made by myself or under my supervision, with pills made from every 
excipient known to us, and also with those purchased from leading pharmacies. Never, in any instance, 
did we find, under like circumstances, an excipient pill dissolved as soon as the non-excipient or com- 
pressed pill. 

To avoid the republication of the entire paper, Prof. Remington has, at our 
request, embodied in his reply to Mr. Campbell the essential portions of his paper, 
so as to enable every intelligent reader to form a judgment, or to repeat the com- 
parative experiments for himself. With these remarks we feel that we can leave the 
matter to the decision of our readers. 

The Druggists of Minnesota, we have been informed, are taxed under a 
State law ten dollars each, for the support of the State Inebriate Asylum. Why the 
Solons of that State have specially selected the druggists for such forced contribu- 
tions is unknown to us. It cannot be that, as a class, they are guilty of keeping 
tinpling-houses, nor because, under the internal revenue law of the United Sfates, 
apothecaries and druggists are compelled to take out a liquor dealer's license. The 
druggists have recently assembled at Minneapolis to protest against that law as an 
outrage ; and in their attempt to secure its repeal de.serve the good wishes of all. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
April, 1876. J 

9 o Reviews, etc. {^jgftSg*- 


Medicinal Plants ; being Descriptions with Original Figures of the Principal Plants 
employed in Medicine, and an Account of their Properties and Uses. By Robert 
Bentley, F. L. S., and Henry Trimen, M. B., F. L. S. Philadelphia: Lindsay & 
Blakiston, 1876. Price of each part, $2.00. 

Parts 2d and 3d of this valuable work, now before us, contain figures and descrip- 
tions of the following North American plants : Lobelia inflata, Gaultheria prccum- 
bens and Sanguinaria canadensis. The remaining plants noticed in the two parts 
are Theobroma cacao, Rhamnus catharticus, Prunus amygdalus, Pyrus cydonia, Cin- 
namonum zeylanicum, Papaver rhoeas, Barosma crenulata, Citrus aurantium, Olea 
europaea, Juniperus communis and Iris florentina. 

We notice that the fusing point of cacao butter is given at i22°F., and its specific 
gravity "961. Other authorities give the spec. grav. "891 to "91, and the fusing point 
at about 30 C.,(96°F.) — See also Trojanowsky, next page. While it is not unlikely 
that different varities of cacao, expressed at different temperatures may yield fats 
varying in fusing point and density, we are not aware of any comparative experiments 
undertaken with the view of ascertaining the causes producing the differences which 
are noticed between the cacao butter of former investigators and that usually met 
with in commerce. 

Among the constituents of sanguinaria, puccina and sanguinarinic acid are given, 
the former of which Hopp proved to be (Amer. Jour. Phar., 1875, p. 193,) sanguin- 
arina mixed with a little resin, and the latter to consist mainly of citric and malic 

The representations of the plants and the descriptive letter-press are very com- 

Gmelin — Kraufs Handbuch der Chemie. Anorganische Chemie. Sechste 
umgearbeitete Auflage. Heidelberg : Carl Winter's Universitats Buchhandlung. 

We have before us Nos. 6 to 10 of vol I. part I j Nos. 5 and 6 of vol. II, and Nos. 
17 to 20, — the conclusion of the third volume. 

The five numbers belonging to the first volume contain the continuation of the 
general and physical chemistry, among which is the chapter on crystallography and 
an exposition of the physical laws bearing on solids and liquids, and relating to elasti- 
city, expansion, density, influence of and behavior to heat, dissociation, capacity of 
absorption and solution, etc. 

The two numbers of the second volume are devoted to the metals of the alkaline 
earths barium, strontium and calcium, and the concluding numbers of the third 
volume to the metals of the platinum group, namely, platinum, palladium, rhodium, 
iridium, ruthenium and osmium. The preparation of the last volume for the press 
consumed a period of over four years, and has been in the hands of Professor S. M. 
Jorgensen, of Copenhagen, who has admirably fulfilled his trust to bring the work 
up to the time of publication, which, in view of the numerous additions and of the 
more extended and perfected theoretical knowledge necessitated the re-writing of 
the greatest portion of the work. The same must be said of the second part of the 
first volume, containing the non-metallic elements, which was finished some time 
ago, having been revised by Professors H. Ritter and Carl Kraut. What remains 
to be finished is the first part of the first volume, containing the general introduction 
into chemical science, and the second volume embracing the metals of the alkalies, 
alkaline earths and earths. The former, of which now ten numbers (608 pages) 
have been published, is entrusted to Professor A. Naumann, of Giessen, a scientist 
eminently qualified for the task from his connection with the " Jahresbericht der 

Am. Jour. Pharm. > 
April, 1876. J 

Reviews, etc. 


Chemie," (annual report on the progress of chemistry) for which he has elaborated 
the same branch since 1867. The second volume is in charge of the editor of the 
entire woik, Professor Kraut, of Hannover, who completed Gmelin's organic chem- 
istry with its supplements in 1870. The completion of the inorganic chemistry 
may now doubtless be looked for in a short time. 

Ueber die nvesentlichen Bestandtheile <von Gehemium sempernj'irens. Von Dr. 
Chas. A. Robbins. Berlin, 1876. 

On the proximate principles of Gels, sempervirens. 

The results of the author agree in the main with those previously obtained 
by Professor Wormley (Amer. Jour. Phar., 1870, p. 1,). The gelseminic 
acid of the latter was found by Dr. Robbins to be identical with aesculin, 
and the amorphous gelseminia, for which the empirical formula C n H 19 N0 2 was 
obtained, was observed to have the reactions noticed by Wormley 5 but a solution 
of gelseminia in concentrated sulphuric acid acquires, on the addition of 
potassium bichromate, particularly at the place of contact, a very characteristic 
cherry-red color having a tint of violet and changing to blueish-green. The 
sulphuric acid solution of gelseminia spread over a porcelain plate acquires, on the 
addition of ceroso-ceric oxide, a rose-cherry red color surrounding the oxide, and 
spreading over the entire surface after stirring with a glass rod. This reaction is 
quite characteristic and very delicate. 

The resins, freed from gelseminia, were found to be destitute of poisonous action 
upon rabbits and pigeons. 

Ein Beitrag zur Phartnacognostichen und Chemischen Kenntniss des Cacaos. Von 
Piers Trojanowsky. Dorpat, 1875. 

A Contribution to the Pharmacognostical and Chemical Knowledge of Cacao. 

This inaugural dissertation, for which the experiments were made in Prof. Dra- 
gendorff's laboratory, treats, in the first part, of the pharmacognostical relations, giv- 
ing brief historical notes, botanical accounts, notes on the culture and descriptions 
of the twenty commercial varieties investigated by the author. 

The second, or chemical part, contains a review of the various analyses, which is 
followed by the quantitative determination of theobromina. This was effected by 
first treating the coarsely powdered material with petroleum benzin, to remove fat j 
the residue is then rubbed with powdered glass and water to a fine powder ; mag- 
nesia is added, and the mixture dried below 70 C. This residue is exhausted with 
two portions of boiling alcohol, and the filtered solution evaporated 5 a little fat and 
a minute amount of a crystallizable body are removed by petroleum benzin, the un- 
dissolved portion washed upon a tared filter with alcohol until the filtrate is nearly 
colorless, and the residue weighed as theobromina j to this weight is added the 
amount of alkaloid dissolved in the alcoholic washings (1 in 1460). In this man- 
+ ner the author obtained from the cotyledons of a Domingo cacao I'aqf; and from 
an African cacao 4-652 per cent, of theobromina. Different samples of the same 
commercial varieties yielded, however, very different amounts. The shells of the 
same varieties, mentioned before, gave respectively 2*056 and 4*540 per cent, of the- 
obromina, the smallest yield being obtained from the shells of a Soconusco cacao 
=o*866 per cent. 

The amount of fat obtained by petroleum benzin varied between 39*30 per cent, 
from a Carracas and 52*05 per cent, from a Surinam cacao. The fusing point of 
the cacao butter, determined in capillary glass tubes, varied between 30 C.=86° F. 
(Brazil cacao) and 32*8° C.=9i° F. (St. Lucia cacao). To determine whether 
cacao butter has been adulterated with other fats, the author recommends the pro- 
cess proposed by^ Bjorklund, in 1864. Two grams of the fat are dissolved, by agi- 
tation, in a strong glass tube; in 4 grams of ether of 17 C (62*6 F.) ; the tube is 


Reviews, etc. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
April, 1876. 

then immersed in water of o° C. (32 F.) Pure cacao butter commences to sepa- 
rate granules after three (Para c.) or five minutes (Puerto Cabello and Caraccas c), 
or the solution began to become turbid after eight (Trinidad, Guayaquil and Suri- 
nam c), or fifteen minutes (Domingo c.) The solutions of Martinique and Bahia 
cacao butter remained clear after twenty-five minutes. If the cacao butter had been 
mixed with 5 per cent, of tallow, the etherial solution became turbid in one minute; 
5 per cent, of suet rendered it turbid in 2^, 10 per cent, in 2, and 20 per cent, in 
one minute ; with 40 per cent, suet, the solution became turbid at once in the cold 

The amount of starch was determined as sugar, and found to vary between 2*23 
(Para c.) and 6-65 per cent. (Soconusco cacao). 

The author has also examined the behavior of the alcoholic tinctures of the dif- 
ferent varieties to various reagents, and, based upon his results, suggests a method 
of determining the commercial variety of cacao from its behavior to such reagent. 

The amount of ashes obtained from the cotyledons varied between 2*08 (St. Vin- 
cent c.) and 3-93 per cent. (Guayaquil c). The shells yielded from 4-67 (Domin- 
ica c.) to 19.27 (Carracas c.) per cent, of ashes. 

To determine the quality of chocolate, the amount of ashes must not much 
exceed 3 per cent., the fat (to be tested with ether, as above stated) not less than 40 
per cent., and the starch not over 7 per cent., in all cases after deduction of the 

Beitrage zur Chemie der Eichen-, Weiden- und Ulmenrinde. Inaugural Dissertation 
von Edwin Johanson. Dorpat, 1875. 8vo, pp. 94. 

Contributions to the Chemistry of Oak, Willow and Elm Barks. 

By his interesting experiments, the author has proven that the tannin of oak and 
willow bark? may be made to yield a crystalline body which possesses all the reac- 
tions of gallic acid. Wagner's distinction, made in 1866, between a pathological 
and physiological tannin is therefore incorrect. By a similar treatment of the tan- 
nin from Ulmus campestris no crystalline body could be obtained. In the course of 
his investigation the author obtained from willow bark benzohelicin, which Piria 
gained in 1852 from populin by treatment with nitric acid. This is the first obser- 
vation of the existence of this body in a plant. 

Proceedings of the Seventh Annual Meeting of the California Pharmaceutical Society ,• 
also, of the "Third Annual Meeting and Commencement Exercises of the California 
College of Pharmacy. San Francisco, 1875. 8vo, pp. 76. 

The pamphlet before us contains, besides the minutes, officers* reports, prospec- 
tus, &c, two papers, read before the Society: "On Ethics of the Profession," by 
E. Painter, and " On Suppositories," by G. G. Burnett, the latter advocating their 
preparation from powdered cacao butter, by hand, with the aid of a spatula. A 
third paper, " On Syrup of Ferrous Iodide," by M. Tschirner, was published in « 
this Journal last year (p. 249). 

The commencement was noticed on page 572 of our last volume. In the pam- 
phlet we find the valedictory address by Prof. Searby, and abstracts from two theses: 
" On Sesame Oil," by R. C. Meyers, and " On Oxytropis campestris," by T. D. 

Wildungen, its Baths and Mineral Springs. By Dr. A. Stoecker. Translated from 
the German by Chas. Harrer, M. D. London: Triibner & Co.; New York: 
E. Steiger. 1875. Pp. 40. 

The pamphlet gives a brief account of these well-known spring*, their medicinal 
properties, composition, &c. 



MAT, 1876. 



Allium. — Garlic was used in ancient times for culinary and medicinal 
purposes, and has preserved its reputation to the present day. The 
bulb, ^tifMBed was originally used as a prophylactic against witchcraft 
and enchantments, and god-fathers attached it to the bodies of babes 
named after them. The species of allium cultivated in oriental coun- 
tries are Allium sativum, A. subbirsutum, A. descendens, A. Porrum, A. 
Schoenoprasum, A. Cepa and A. Moly, the latter having been extensively 
used as a protection against the evil influences of the renowned enchan- 
tress, Circe. The onion is largely consumed in the Orient ; together 
with bread, it forms the principal nourishment of the poorer classes, 
and, with grapes, tomatoes, olives and wine, it constitutes the suste- 
nance of thousands of travelers in the summer time from morning till 

Asphodelus racemosus and bulbosus are interesting plants, known from 
the remotest time. Being found in cemeteries, it was consecrated to 
Persephone and the divinities of Hades. Its principal use was against 
the bites of venomous insects, snakes and scorpions, and in inflamma- 
tion of the testicles. A very strongly adhesive substance is prepared 
from these bulbs, in Turkey, by exsiccating them thoroughly, in suit- 
able ovens, when they acquire the glutinous properties of dextrin, and 
are employed as paste by bookbinders and shoemakers. Pythagoras 
called the plant Ilavy.p6.Ttov, pancration, a plant governing all, or pos- 
sessing all properties. This name was adopted by Linnaeus for Pan- 
cratium maritimum, which grows near the sea coast, and the bulb of 
which is not unfrequently exported as an admixture of squill ; its flow- 
ers are very beautiful and have a delicious odor. The bulb of it and 
of Scilla maritima, boiled with honey, are esteemed as excellent reme- 


1 94 Medicinal Plants of Greece. { Am A?y, 

dies in chronic bronchitis and pulmonary consumption, and it is said 
that by the use of these remedies Pythagoras had extended his life to 
134 years. From Theognis we have the proverb " e scilla non nascitur 
rosa." The name scilla, not squilla, is derived from the Greek veib 
SuXkltv, because the bulb can be readily divided into small pieces or 

Lagoecia cuminoides is commonly called lagokoimitia or hare's bed 
(kayoq, hare), because the young hares are said to be always found hid- 
den under this plant, which is esteemed in the Orient against nephritic 

Ceterach officinarum, Willd. — Many years ago, when I was examined, 
the question was asked, whether sterility could be produced, to which 
I answered, u No, except by abortifacient medicines, such as savin, 
ergot, powerful drastics and emmenagogues." Some years ago a mid- 
wife was accused of Laving given to a rich lady some medicine to pre- 
vent her bearing children. Several plants having been sent to me for 
examination, I found among them the one mentioned above, which is 
the Asplenium Ceterach, Lin., and which appears to be employed for the 
purpose indicated ; its effects, however, remain to be examined. 

Dictamnus creticus. — This plant is indigenous to the island of Crete, 
where the flowers and leaves are collected, tied up in small bundles, 
and sold as an excellent remedy against dysmenorrhoea and amcenor- 
rhoea of young women. In ancient times it enjoyed a very great rep- 
utation in many ailments of women, and it is to be regretted that it, 
like many other useful plants, has been neglected in modern times in 
favor of others not possessing the same virtues ; but it is still employed 
to some extent as a reliable emmenagogue, together with the well- 
known and highly esteemed Ruta graveolens. 

Sonckus oleraceus. — The ancient name (sonchos) of this plant is derived 
from ^(oyvxeeiv, life-giving. It has enjoyed a high repute for its medi- 
cinal properties among the ancient authors, Theophrastus, Pliny, Dios- 
corides, &c. " Sonchus quod succum salubrem fundit qui stomachi 
rosiones lenit et nutricibus lac augit." For these reasons, the plant is 
boiled and eaten with oil, and nursing women apply it in the form of 
cataplasms, with the view of augmenting the secretion of milk. The 
plant is greatly esteemed in diseases of the liver, particularly in jaundice. 

Cuscuta epilinum, Toad flax, is a parasitic plant found upon Satureja 

Am •]^ a u y r ;x8 7 h 6 a . rm, } Medicinal Plants of Greece. 195 

and Thymus, the latter of which is frequently completely covered 
with it. It occurs, also, often upon the flax (Aivov), whence is derived 
its specific name, epilinon. It was recommended by Pliny in dropsi- 
cal affections, in which it is still employed, also in angina and gouty 

Nerium Oleander. — This beautiful plant is called in Greece rhodo- 
daphne (from ^podov, rose, and ddcpv/j, laurel or bay), or rose bay, and 
picrodaphne (niKpoz^ bitter), or bitter bay ; the name nerion, vqptov, is 
derived from i^/>oc, humid, and indicates a water-loving plant, because 
it grows in moist places. When taken internally, the extreme bitter- 
ness nearly always produces nausea ; but, after long-continued use, it 
has been found to be of some value in epilepsy, by reducing consider- 
ably the frequency of the paroxysms, although not effecting a complete 

Anagyris fcztida is a leguminous tree, the leaves of which have pur- 
gative properties, and are employed by the peasants like senna, under 
the name of pseudo-sinamiki, false senna leaves. When the leaves 
are rubbed between the fingers, their very offensive odor is developed, 
which is likewise perceived when the tree is shaken either by hand or 
by the wind. This is the origin of the Greek proverb, "Avdyupcv 
Kwic<7 — pLjj avdyopcv" which has been in use from very remote times, 
and which signifies (Do not shake the anagyris), to avoid stirring up 
unpleasant affairs which in the course of time have been forgotten. 
The fruit having a resemblance to beans, they are called agriophaselo, 
or wild beans, in the island of Cyprus. 

Atractylis gummifera, by the ancient Greeks called chamaileon, is a 
handsome, thistle like plant, yielding an exudation, which is collected 
by women and children, and sold as pseudo-mastich or acantho-mastich. 
The pieces, consisting of agglutinated tears, are oblong in shape, and 
usually about two inches in length by one inch in thickness. Its root bears 
some resemblance to celery and parsnip, and is occasionally mistaken 
for these esculent roots. In the island of Melos four children were 
poisoned and died last year from eating the root of this plant, and 
another case had occurred, a few years ago, in the island of Mykonos. 

The holy plants Verbena. — Not only the genus which at present bears 
that name, but medicinal plants generally, were in olden times known 
by the name of verbena, i. e., hpo fioraw], hierobotane, or holy plants, 


Medicinal Plants of Greece. 

Am Jour. Pharm. 
May, 1876 

because they enjoyed great reputation amongst the Greeks and Romans 
against execrations, apparitions, witchcraft and other demoniacal influ- 
ences. The priests using these plants were called verbenarii. 

Arum Dracunculus, maculatum, &c. — All plants which, in their flow- 
ers or roots, either by color or form, have some resemblance to a snake 
or scorpion, are called ophidochorton (o<pcq, a snake), ophidobotanon, 
or skorpidochorton. Such plants are Heliotropium hirsutum, Scolopen- 
drum officinale, Lithospermum apulum, Echinum vulgare, and principally 
Arum dracunculus, so named from its resemblance in color to the skin 
of some serpents and the tiger ; its horrible odor resembles that of the 
cadavers of some animals. All the above-named plants are used in 
the Orient by the common people as a prophylactic as well as a cure 
of the bites of venomous snakes and scorpions, which, in Greece, have 
frequently resulted in death. 

Eruca sativa is extensively cultivated in oriental countries as a pot- 
herb and salad. The seeds, which have a biting flavor when masti- 
cated — hence the name from spuco, I draw — are collected in Macedo- 
nia and often exported to France, where they are probably used as an 
admixture to white mustard. 

Cataplasms are almost universally employed in all oriental countries, 
and are popularly resorted to as the beginning of the treatment in nearly 
all complaints. The principal articles used for this purpose are flax- 
seed and mallow flowers, okra fruit (Hibiscus esculentus\ Corinthian 
raisins and figs ; a mixture of wax and honey is likewise frequently 
used. Against the bites of venomous snakes and scorpions, the leaves 
of Solanum Mehngena, called meltsanes, are used in the form of cata- 
plasms, besides the various parts of plants mentioned above, which 
appear to be used mainly on the principle : Similia similibus curantur. 
Cataplasms are often made with wine, and with wine must and milk. 

A very curious cataplasm was used during the visit of the plague for 
accelerating the suppuration of the buboes ; it consisted of a mixture 
of caviar and flaxseed, and was used with good success, upon the advice 
of the nurses, in my own case, after having been infected by a pesti- 
lential cat in the island of Paros, where I had been sent by the gov- 
ernment to assist in arresting this horrible disease. 

The fever plant, thermochorton, in the times of Hippocrates was the 
lesser centaury, Erythrcea centaurium, which is still used with marked 

Am. Jour. Pharm. \ 
May, 1876. J 

Pressed Herbs. 

l 97 

success in the chronic fevers of oriental countries ; it is made into a 
strong decoction together with the leaves of the olive tree. The name 
of the plant is supposed by some to be derived from Kivraupoc, cen- 
taur, while others refer its origin to the words centum, a hundred, and 
aurum, gold, signifying a plant worth a hundred gold pieces. 

In this connection it may be stated that there are annually consumed 
in Greece about 20,000 kilos, and in all the oriental countries over 
500,000 kilos of sulphate of quinia. 



Herbs are pressed to reduce their bulk, they then are compact, re- 
quire but little space for storage, and are easily handled. If I mistake 
not, I have named about the only advantages pressed herbs possess 
over loose. 

My experiments teach me that they deteriorate nearly, if not quite, 
as rapidly when pressed as loose. In either case, they are exposed to 
the action of the atmosphere, and the decomposing effects of the 
moisture with which it is usually laden. Insects attack both. Pressed 
herbs, without a doubt, mould quickest. Excepting the mere matter 
of bulk there is no inducement for pressing herbs. Common paper 
bags, or even cotton sacks, will preserve them as well. The desidera- 
tum of the day is a process for preserving the delicate medicinal 
principles of our herbs from season to season. If this can be accom- 
plished, in conjunction with compactness of form, so much the better, 
otherwise let us choose quality first, even though it be at the sacrifice 
of convenience in handling. 

In the proceedings of the Amer. Pharmaceutical Association, 1875, 
we find an article from the pen of Mr. A. W. Miller, upon an im- 
proved method for preserving herbs, said improvement being the sub- 
stitution of pasteboard boxes for paper. The herbs, instead of being 
pressed by the dealers into compact masses, as is now customary, are, 
by the pharmacists themselves, firmly packed into the box by hand, 
remaining loose enough to admit of examination at any time. In my 
opinion, the important point in connection with dried herbs is preserva- 
tion, not convenience. Is there any advantage to be derived, in this 
respect, from the substitution of pasteboard boxes for our machine 

Pressed Herbs. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
May, 1876. 

presses, or even paper or cotton bags ? Will boxes prevent the rav- 
ages of insects, or preserve the delicate organic principles upon which 
many of our herbs depend for their medicinal values ? This is the 
direct issue, not convenience in packing and the value of shelf room. 

Personally, I have met with many aggravations respecting loose and 
pressed herbs, barks and roots, as found upon the market. Necessity 
has compelled me to experiment upon their preservation. The subject 
is very important to every druggist and pharmacist, and I feel that a 
brief description of the most successful of my experiments will be of 
interest to many readers of the " Journal." To preserve herbs with any 
satisfaction, I was compelled to use air- tight tin cans. Gather the 
herb when in its prime, quickly and carefully dry it, then, by hand, 
press it into the can, sprinkle upon it chloroform, in the proportion of 
half an ounce to each pound, replace the cover immediately and ren- 
der the can air tight by painting the edges with melted beeswax. 
Herbs like peppermint, spearmint, &c, which depend for their virtues 
mostly upon delicate essential oils, can be nicely preserved in this way. 
Roots and herbs that are particularly liable to the attacks of insects, 
e. g., parsley root, burdock root, motherwort, will show no sign of 
their presence. Is there any objection to chloroform in this connec- 
tion ? I think not ; it is quickly dissipated when exposed to the 
atmosphere ; it certainly is of much value, insect life being destroyed 
by its vapor ; without it, even though in air-tight cans, specimens will 
be attacked. Aside from this, I believe the vapor of chloroform 
exerts a preservative influence over most of the delicate proximate 
principles of our plants. 

Any druggist can have tin cans made to order, at small expense y 
with careful handling they will last many years, being refilled each 
season. Of course the process necessitates some trouble, and when 
the customer is waited upon, a little time must be consumed in replac- 
ing and waxing the cover. It is time well employed, however, for 
the majority of customers will prefer paying double the price of ordi- 
nary herbs for those preserved in this manner. 

The season is now approaching for replenishing the stock of botani- 
cal specimens. This stock must last until next year. Druggists can 
gather many articles they will otherwise be compelled to purchase. 
Pharmacists who knowingly will not allow a grain of other inferior 
and adulterated medicines to enter their stores, are compelled to dis- 

Am MaT' 1 8 P 7 h 6? m -} Modern Methods in Pharmacy. 199 

pense from their counters, each year, a large amount of old and 
worthless pressed herbs, often mouldy, and usually full of stems, 
sticks, dirt, &c. They must take what the market affords, unless they 
gather prime articles at the proper season. But it may be well to 
remember that prime herbs in August are entirely different materials 
the following January, unless precautions are taken to preserve them. 

The process of preserving herbs in tin cans, by means of a little 
chloroform, was suggested to me by the late Prof. W. B. Chapman, 
of this city, who had met with remarkable success in applying it to 



In considering a subject, the mind should not be fettered by preju- 
dice, nor should a new method or invention be condemned before the 
application of careful tests. The pharmacist who desires his profes- 
sion to be progressive, should encourage invention and discovery, and 
adopt methods which lighten his labors by facilitating neatness and 
accuracy in manipulation and expedition in the dispatch of business. 
The term " Elegant Parmacy " is frequently misapplied, but we often 
notice elegance in quality and style of many preparations, which mark 
a striking contrast between old and new methods. Elegance consistent 
with accuracy, should be aimed at by all pharmacists who hope to ex- 
cel in their calling. The primitive forms in which medicines have 
been presented, are very much modified through the influence of 
science and education. The old-fashioned decoctions and infusions 
have been displaced to a great extent by tinctures, fluid and solid ex- 
tracts ; but these preparations, though vastly superior, were not much 
favored at first. The increase of chemical knowledge has developed 
methods by which crude drugs have yielded their active principles in a 
pure and concentrated form. 

The old style " bolus " has lost its repulsiveness by the process of 
extraction, and its offspring, the modern pill, in being prepared of 
extracts, alkaloids, resinoids, etc., is unobjectionable in size, and ren- 
dered more acceptable by the process of coating with sugar or gelatin, 
so that in its transit to the stomach, the palate is not offended. The 
forms of medicines known as granules, pearls, dragees, globules, cap- 
sules, cachets and compressed sugar and gelatin coated pills, are of 

200 Modern Methods in Pharmacy. { A \ty,\lX m ' 

recent introduction, and mostly of French origin. Thus by modern 
methods in pharmacy, nauseating remedies are relieved of disagreeable 
taste. Medicines in powder form are now placed between two concave 
wafer discs, and in the cachet thus formed, can be swallowed without 
the slightest inconvenience. Another important class of modern rem- 
edies are the chemicals. Many of these are administered in the form 
of solution, which is sometimes objectionable in many cases, owing to 
their disagreeable taste. The essential oils and balsams are also fre- 
quently objectionable on this account, in consideration of which the 
artistic pharmacists of France devised new methods which have been 
largely imitated in this country by manufacturing pharmacists. 

An English writer, referring to the practice of pharmacy in France, 
calls it the " Pharmacy of Sugar." Careful inquiry will disclose the 
fact, that the pharmacy of science and art would be the more appro- 
priate term ; for they not only include sugar largely in their prepara- 
tions (thus wisely employing the confectioner's art, when practicable), but 
have taken an original step in the introduction of soluble gelatin or 
gluten capsules, as a vehicle for the administration of nauseous reme- 
dies. Although this art is being imitated in the United States, the 
results do not compare with those of the French ; at least, we have 
not met with medicated gelatin capsules made here with liquid contents 
that favorably compare with those furnished by the importers of French 
medicines. Those who examine these medicated globules are pleas- 
antly impressed with their neatness of finish, regularity of size, trans- 
parency, and the complete manner in which each globule is filled. The 
attractive form in which French remedies are presented constitute them 
formidable rivals of the delectable homoeopathic granules. French 
pharmacists employ the culinary art also — even that of sacred origin ; 
for, doubtless, the use of unleavened bread, suggested medicine wafers 
which idea has been brought to a high degree of perfection by M. 
Limousin, of Paris, in the introduction of concave wafer discs. The 
preparation of u cachets de pain," is a new method in pharmacy of 
utility and importance, which when understood, will be generally 
appreciated. These envelopes of bread afford the most convenient 
means extant for the extemporaneous and tasteless administration of 
medicines in powder form. With the press and wafers, prescriptions 
can be conveniently and expeditiously dispensed in a tasteless form, 
when it would be impossible to do so by any other convenient means. 

Am M?y, r 'i8^! rm 'j Modern Methods in Pharmacy, 201 

A review of the history of the introduction of " cachets de pain " in 
this country, will explain the opposition that has been urged against 
them. If we are correctly informed, a pharmacist of a Western city, 
on a visit to Paris, saw the cachets, and being informed of their pop- 
ularity, obtained from M. Limousin a lever press and wafer discs, 
which he successfully introduced into his own trade. Recognizing 
merit in the method, he imported more of the discs, with a view of 
selling them to the profession ; but instead of importing the presses of 
Limousin, and continuing to import his wafer discs, which leave noth- 
ing to be desired, arrangements were made to supply presses and discs 
of home manufacture, greatly inferior to the French, and at prices 
higher than Limousin's should have been sold for. 

This condition of things engendered opposition, and, in our opinion, 
prevented the general adoption of the method, or at least, made it un- 
popular with some. The press and wafers of American manufacture, 
which we have seen, are not to be compared with Limousin's ; hence, 
we are not surprised that the former should not be received with favor. 

The time consumed in the preparation of cachets is urged as an 
objection to their use. This, time and experience will overcome, for 
it matters not how skillful the operator, the application of any new 
method will be found troublesome at first. Skill is the result of 
observation and experience. In this connection we will briefly review 
an essay on "cachets de pain," in the "American Journal of Phar- 
macy," vol xlviii. No. 3, p. 100. The writer refers to them as "wafer 
discs found in the market under the name of cachets de pain." To be 
correct, the wafer discs are the material used in preparing cachets de 
pain (envelopes of bread). These, when enclosing medicines, are 
known as medicated cachets (cachets medicamenteux). The writer 
calls the method the "theory of the inventor," which is incorrect, for 
when a fact is demonstrable, as this is, it cannot be called a theory. 

The writer's directions for preparing the cachets, and his mode of 
administration, deserve notice. The edges of each disc should not be 
moistened, as he recommends, but the marginal edges of one only, and 
that very slightly (experience is worth something at this point), and in 
taking the cachets, if properly moistened, no trouble is experienced in 
swallowing them. If properly prepared, they will not adhere to the 
press, nor to each other when placed in a box, as mentioned by the 
essayist ; neither will they "cleave to the roof of the mouth" if properly 

ioi Modern Methods in Pharmacy. { Km ^;™6. m ' 

moistened. He mentions the time necessary for their preparation as 
being five times greater than that required for preparing pills and pow- 
ders. Such has not been our experience, hence, we conclude from his 
remarks, that he is not skilled in the art of preparing cachets, and for 
fear that fallacious impressions may be made on the minds of those 
who have not examined the subject for themselves, we deem it expedi- 
ent to controvert his statements. 

The word theory is again used in his endeavor to condemn cachets 
de pain. In concluding the dissertation, in order to strengthen his 
objections, he observes : " This is not only my personal experience, 
but that of several physicians of this city, who, having submitted this 
method to fair trial, have arrived at the conclusion that cachets de pain 
are a failure." 

We were the first to prepare cachets de pain in Baltimore, and at a 
period previous to their introduction in any of the Eastern cities ; the 
press and wafers of Limousin only being used. They have been regu- 
larly dispensed since their introduction, and are highly esteemed by 
physicians. After a little trouble at first, no inconvenience has been 
experienced with them, — the time consumed in their preparation being 
very little more than that required for pills and powders ; and accidents, 
such as recorded by the writer, we have never encountered. 

We concluded to repeat the experiment of the writer with cachets 
containing effervescing salts. One cachet was prepared with a mixture 
of tartaric acid and bicarbonate of sodium, another with citric acid and 
carbonate of potassium. As usual, after joining the edges of the discs, 
they were quite dry in a few seconds. On being placed separately in 
water, they became perfectly flacid, but several cachets could have 
been swallowed before any sign of rupture or effervescence was noticed. 
The recommendation of Planten's jujube paste capsules, as a prefera- 
ble means of administering medicines in a tasteless form (particularly 
if in powder), convinces us of the writer's lack of familiarity with this 
method. The capsules will not compare with the wafer discs in point 
of economy or convenience, nor can they be as expeditiously prepared. 
However, they answered an excellent purpose, until Limousin placed 
his unique press and concave wafer discs within the reach of pharma- 
cists, and even now, may be preferred in a few cases. Therefore, we 
cannot conclude with the writer, that cachets de pain, of the kind we 
dispense, "will soon be referred to as a thing of the past," but, on the 
contrary, like many other innovations, strongly opposed at first, will in 

Am Ma^8 7 h 6! rm '} Modern Methods in Pharmacy. 203 

time receive a most favorable notice, and be largely employed in 
dispensing the preparations of physicians. 

Another method which meets with opposition, but promises to grow 
in favor, is the process of preparing compressed pills, for which a con- 
venient and inexpensive machine has recently been placed within 
reach of the entire profession. No doubt, compressed pills will be of 
limited application, but for such substances as bicarbonate of sodium, 
bicarbonate of potassium, bisulphate of quinia, and the like, it is prefer- 
able to the old method. This form of pills is not new, as in England 
and the United States they have been known for many years/but here- 
tofore they had been prepared exclusively by the few. 

Lastly, though not least, of the methods in pharmacy, which may be 
termed modern, is the moulding of suppositories. These are not a new 
class of preparations. We have before us the Dispensatory of Valerius 
Cordi, published in 1571, in which we find a formula for purgative sup- 
positories, but from the very nature of the formula, we do not suppose 
them to have been the pretty things which are now called " supposi- 
tories," with due respect to those who prefer hand-made suppositories. 
We value the modern method of moulding as a great advancement in 
the art. Every pharmacist should endeavor to be supplied with the 
means of conducting his manipulations, according to the most approved 
scientific and artistic methods. Those who are not willing to incur the 
expense and inconvenience, should not throw obstacles in the way of 
progress. Who would be content to employ themselves in a shop 
furnished after the best model of the last century ? No gas, no coal, 
no water, and destitute of a hundred other conveniences which science 
and art have brought to our aid. The old shop, with windows of bot- 
tled snakes, jars of rancid dog lard, snake oil, human fat and numerous 
other repulsive and unnecessary remedies, through the influence of 
science and art have been displaced by the modern palatial pharmacy, 
replete with chemical and pharmaceutical apparatus, and the introduc- 
tion of new methods. 



The use of these articles, comparatively new to American pharma- 
cists, seems to be increasing to so great an extent, that I have thought 
a few practical notes on the subject would not be unacceptable to the 

204 Cachets de Pain. 

readers of the " Journal," although it has been so lately and so well 
treated of by others. 

About the only possible objections to their universal introduction 
and use are those put forward by Mr. Lechler in the number for 
March last of this periodical, and as these objections have been suc- 
cessfully answered and refuted by Mr. Blair (April number), there is 
no need of further reference to them. 

One objection to the general introduction of the use of cachets has 
hitherto been the cost of the press considered necessary for their pre- 
paration. I wish, therefore, to suggest a cheap, " home-made " appa- 
ratus, which, while it may not take the place of the more costly presses 
with those who may prefer and can afford them, will yet enable even 
the poorest in the ranks of our proverbially poor profession to possess 
a press, at a cost of only a few cents, which will turn out the cachets 
equal to the best. 

I have prepared a great many cachets by the following- described 

A piece of hard wood, about six or eight inches long by four inches 
wide, serves for the base of the machine. In this fasten the lower 
dies (the brass buttons for stair-rods, as suggested by Mr. Mclntyre, 
answer an admirable purpose, and can be had of exactly the proper 
sizes), one for each size of cachet. They should be sunk in the wood, 
so as to be on a level with the top. Similar dies are to be screwed to 
wooden handles, and the machine is complete. These handles, neatly 
turned, can be purchased at any hardware or house-furnishing store. 

It will be seen that this machine differs from that figured in the 
"Journal" for January last, in having the upper dies attached to han- 
dles separate from the rest of the press. In using it, all that is neces- 
sary is to place an empty wafer on the die, place the medicine on it, 
cover it with another cachet, properly moistened, apply to this the 
upper die, and a very slight pressure upon this, or a tap with the handle 
of a spatula, is sufficient to cause them to adhere. In this way any 
number of complete cachets may be made in a very expeditious 

One word in regard to the proper moistening of the upper disk. 
There is no need of any complicated "wetter" for this purpose. A 
piece of flannel or muslin, wet and then wrung out, and folded two or 
three times, will be found to answer every purpose. Several of the 
disks may be laid upon this damp surface, to be taken up one by one 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
May, 1876. J 

Glycerin as an Excipient. 

for the press, and they will be found to have absorbed sufficient moist- 
ure to make them adhesive, but none too much. My practice is to 
put them immediately from the press into a bottle, and I have never 
had to complain of too much moisture. 

The polished brass dies are very easily kept clean, and the whole 
machine possesses the advantage of great simplicity, and will last for 
years, u with no expense for repairs." 

The public are always ready to encourage legitimate enterprize, and 
in these days of elixirs, sugar pellets, &c, every pharmacist will find 
it conducive to his interests to introduce the cachets de pain to the 
notice of physicians and his customers. 

I think the cachets may also be found useful for enveloping minute 
doses of liquid medicines, provided they exert no solvent action upon 
the envelope. I have never seen this suggested, but see no reason to 
doubt its practicability. 

Philadelphia, April, 1876. 



[From an Inaugural Essay.) 

As an excipient for pill masses, glycerin has been recommended in 
combination with starch or tragacanth for pills generally, and without 
any combination for pills of quinia and other chemicals. The latter 
was suggested by Dr. T. E. Jenkins in the "Amer. Journ, Pharm,," 
1869, p. 119. However, little or nothing has been said of its advan- 
tageous use as an excipient for pills generally. I have used it in com- 
pounding prescriptions for the last three years, and now am confident 
of its superior properties, and feel safe to recommend its use by every 
pharmacist whenever it is applicable. I prefer to use it without any 
intermixture, for it answers all purposes and is more convenient to use ; 
being a liquid, it can be dropped from a vial, which is done with greater 
rapidity, accuracy and cleanliness than if combined with starch or 
tragacanth, which combinations being semi-fluids would have to be 
used with a spatula, and if the requisite quantity be known, would have 
to be weighed. Syrup of acacia is most frequently used, over which 
glycerin has two important advantages. Pills made with syrup of 
acacia are all larger, and, if kept for a while, become very hard, while 


Glycerin as an Excipient. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
May, 1876. 

those made with glycerin never become perfectly hard, although they 
are firm and retain their shape, and, when held between the fingers for 
a while, and worked, they become very pliable. The amount of syrup 
of acacia necessary is invariably larger than that of glycerin, as will be 
seen by the following formulas ; though trifling in some, the difference 
is sufficient to show that more syrup is required : 


Acid, tannici, 
LJ Glycerinae, 

(or syrup, acaciae, 
M. ft. pil., No. viii. 


Pulv. opii, 
Pulv. camphorae, 
Acid, tannici, 
(or syrup, acacias, 
M. ft. pil., No. x. 

gr. xvi 
gtt. iii 
gtt. iv) 

gr. v 
gr. x 

gr. xxv 
gtt. v 

gtt. x) 


Acid tannici, 
Pulv. opii, 
(or syrupi acacias, 
M. ft. pil., No. v. 


Pulv. opii, 
Pulv. plumbi acet., 
(or syrup, acaciae, 
M. ft. pil., No. xvi. 

gr. xv 
gr. iii 
gtt. ii 
gtt. v) 

gr. vin 
gr. xl 
gtt. i 

gtt. ii) 


Aloes socot., 

Ferri sulph. exsic, aa gr. xii 

Glycerinae (containing 10 

per cent, of alcohol) gtt. ii 

(or syrup, acaciae, gtt. vi 

If glycerin alone is used with these substances, the mass will be ap- 
parently adhesive, but upon rolling, it will crumble, and cannot be 
formed into pills j this difficulty is overcome by the small quantity of 


Quiniae sulph. 
Ext. colocynth. co., 
Pulv. capsici, 
M. ft. pil., No. xxiv. 

. gr. xxiv 
gr. xviii 
. gr. xii 
gtt. v (or syr. acac, gtt xii) 

The quantity of glycerin in this formula seems insufficient, but upon 
working with considerable pressure, it will be found to be just enough 
to form a very good mass. 

Quiniae sulph., . . , • gr. xxiv 

Pulv. capsici, gr. xviii 

Glycerinae, . . gtt. xii (or syr. acac, gtt. xii) 

Am Mly" r i8 P 7 6 arm } Effervescing Preparations. 207 

The quantity of glycerin required in this one seems quite large when 
compared with the one just before it, which is due to the absence of 
an adhesive substance ; for if two grains of powdered acacia be added, 
only eight drops are required. 

Quiniae sulph., . . . gr. xxx 

Ferri. sulph. exsic, ... gr. xv 

Strychnia? sulph , . . . gr. i 

Glycerinae, . . gtt. xii (or syr. acac, gtt. xv) 

M. ft. pil , No. xxx. 

First rub the sulph. strychnia with a drop of water, add the other 
ingredients and mix the whole thoroughly together ; then add the 
glycerin, and triturate briskly until an even mass is formed, which 
divide into pills as quickly as possible. When done slowly, the mass 
becomes very brittle, and cannot be rolled out. In the above formula 
I first noticed the great advantage of knowing the exact quantity of 
this excipient for forming a mass, for which purpose eighteen drops 
may be added on a slow operation. 

I have a list of formulas similar to the above always within reach at 
the dispensing counter, to which I can refer to ascertain the amount of 
glycerin necessary to form a mass, and also write the amount used on 
the prescription. The glycerin is best dropped by means of a glass 
tube drawn out at one end to an aperture of J- inch (or by means of the 
apparatus figured on page 99 of this volume). 



[From an Inaugural Essay.) 
Within a few years past, an effervescing solution of sodium tartrate 1 
has been slowly gaining confidence among physicians as an active 
cathartic and purge, superior to solution of magnesium citrate, among 
the people as a cooling beverage and agreeable cathartic, and among 
pharmacists as an elegant, permanent and profitable preparation. Its 
superiority over solution of magnesium citrate lies principally in the 
following qualities : It does not debilitate the bowels, and leave them 
in a weakened condition. It does not produce tenesmus, and therefore 
can be used with much less pain, as a purge, where hemorrhoids are 

1 See "American Journal of Pharmacy," 1873, P- z %9- 

208 Effervescing Preparations. { Am £y%8 7 h 6 arm ' 

present, than the magnesia solution. It is a permanent solution, and 
does not precipitate nor became cloudy, after a few days, as the mag- 
nesia solution frequently does. It is as palatable and pharmaceutically 
elegant as the magnesia solution, superior to it in medicinal value, 
and of much more profit to the pharmacist in manufacturing. 

The formula which I have ascertained to give the most stable pro- 
duct and gratifying results is the following, viz : 

Take of sodium carbonate, . . . £1 

acid tartaric, in crystals, . . . £vi 

oil of lemon, . . . gtt. iii 

simple syrup, .... f^iss 
pure water, . . . q. s. ft. f^xii 

The operation is as follows : reduce the sodium carbonate to pow- 
der, rub the oil of lemon intimately with it, and then add water 
sufficient to dissolve ; to this solution add five drachms of the tartaric 
acid, and stir occasionally till the acid is dissolved. Filter this solution 
to remove any impurities which may be present, or any cloudiness 
resulting from the introduction of the oil of lemon. To this filtrate 
add the syrup, agitate thoroughly, then add one drachm of tartaric 
acid (the remaining amount), cork and tie immediately to preserve the 
carbonic acid gas ; finally, agitate the contents of the bottle occasionally 
till the acid is all dissolved, and keep in a cool place cork downwards. 

The reasons for using the acid in crystals for producing the tartrate, 
are these : The commercial powdered acid usually contains impuri- 
ties, and sometimes adulterations, not present in the crystals ; to powder 
them previously to adding to the alkaline solution would be an unnec- 
essary occupation ; finally the reaction is performed much slower and 
more regularly than where the powdered acid is used, an object, I 
think, greatly to be desired in processes evolving much carbonic acid 
gas. The last portion of the acid could be added by dissolving it first 
in the syrup and adding this solution, but in doing this the reaction is 
severe and instantaneous, so that much gas is often lost, while with 
the crystals the reaction is moderate, and sufficient time is given for 
inserting the cork, and for the gas to dissolve in the liquid. 

Prepared in this manner, effervescing solution of sodium tartrate is 
a very agreeable beverage, and can be preserved unimpaired for most 
any length of time, samples having been kept through the hot months 

I have found such a wide difference in samples of sodium carbonate, 

^i^S^T'} Syrup of Ferrous Iodide. \o 9 

obtained from different establishments, in regard to purity, efflorescence 
and amount of water of crystallization, that I have purified and 
recrystallized this salt, much to my satisfaction, and it will fully repay 
pharmacists to adopt the following plan : 

Dissolve the large crystals of common sal soda in pure water, allow 
all the insoluble impurities to subside, filter this solution and evaporate 
at a moderate heat till a pellicle forms over the surface of the liquid, 
and set aside for two or three days to crystallize. A small proportion 
of mother liquor remains, which, if sufficiently pure, may be still 
farther evaporated and crystallized, if desired. These crystals should 
now be dried on a linen strainer in a moderately warm air-chamber, 
much care being necessary in this operation, as the crystals effloresce 
readily in the atmosphere, and too much heat will easily liquify the 
salt again. This process yields beautiful, clear, oblique-rhombic, 
prismatic crystals, which should be preserved in well-stopped jars. It 
may contain some sodium chloride and sulphate, which, however, if 
in minute quantity only, do not detract from its medicinal value. 

An effervescing granular salt of sodium tartrate may be formed by 
heating, on a sand bath, anhydrous sodium carbonate and pure pow- 
dered tartaric acid, in the proportion of three parts of the alkali to four 
and a quarter of the acid. Care must be taken to do this in a vessel 
not affected, chemically, by tartaric acid, and to keep the chemicals 
well stirred and scraped up from the bottom, or they will become yel- 
low and carbonized. This gives an agreeable, slightly acid salt, very 
•soluble in water, which solution effervesces briskly, and forms a conve- 
nient and pleasant cathartic and cooling drink. This preparation 
keeps well and does not attract moisture, as do many effervescing 
granular salts. 

For a cooling drink the solution may be taken in tablespoonful 
doses hourly, as a mild cathartic one half a bottleful and for a brisk 
purge a whole bottleful. The granular salt may be taken in teaspoon- 
ful or tablespoonful doses, dissolved in sweetened water. 



My attention was called, in making syrup iodide of iron, U. S. P., 
to a change occurring in the same lot under different circumstances. 
The syrup was made in accordance with the officinal process, care 


2 1 (J* Tinctura Ferri Chloridi. { A \llyjj 6 arm ' 

being taken to follow out minutely the " Pharmacopoeia " directions as 
to temperature, &c. The result convinced me that the effect of light 
on the preparation has little or nothing to do with the chemical change 
resulting in the discoloration so often seen in this syrup, but is the 
result of atmospheric change in the bottle, caused by careless stopping 
or defective corks. 

From the syrup six one-ounce vials were filled ; three of these were 
corked ; three were glass-stoppered vials, in one of which the stopper 
was coated with paraffin. The syrup in two of the corked bottles 
retained the desired appearance. The portion in the glass-stoppered 
vials met with a change in one instance ; the stopper coated with paraf- 
fin and another fitting securely, remaining unchanged. These bottles 
were all placed in a window, exposed during the greater part of the 
day more or less directly to the sun's rays, remaining in this state for 
about one month. 

I have found that the addition of either phosphoric or citric acid, as 
suggested by Mr. Thos. B. Groves ("Am. Jour. Pilar.," 1868, page 
265), to be of great benefit in preserving the syrup from atmospheric 
action, resulting in altered properties and unsightly appearance. 

Philadelphia, March 25, 1876. 

Note by the Editor. — That the discoloration of syrup of ferrous 
iodide is due to the oxidizing influence of the atmosphere, and not to 
light, has been repeatedly discussed in this Journal since 1854. 



[From an Inaugural Fssay.) 
The specific gravity of this tincture is '990, and each fluidounce 
should yield, when treated with ammonia water in excess, precipitate of 
ferric oxide, weighing, after washing, drying and igniting, 28*8 grains. 
Each fluidounce should also contain 39*5 grains of anhydrous hydro- 
chloric acid. It should give no dark coloration on addition of a crystal 
of ferrous sulphate and sulphuric acid (absence of nitric acid), and no 
blue precipitate with potassic ferridcyanide (absence of ferrous salt) 
To see how near the tinctures kept in the shops might coincide with 
these figures in regard to amount of ferric oxide and anhydrous acid 
contained in them, and also their action with the officinal tests given 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
May, 1876. 

A Singular Reaction. 

21 1 

to ascertain their freedom from or the presence of the various impuri- 
ties to which it is most liable, several samples, from some of the lead- 
ing pharmacists of this city, were examined, with the following results :: 

No. of 

O 4.1 1 J 1 U1C. 

Amount of 

Oxide to f^i. 

Acid to f^i. 

Nitric Acid. 

Ferrous Oxide. 


on standing. 




35-2 grs. 
















































37 - o 






















2 3'4 







From the above table it will be seen that the samples examined do 
not vary very greatly in regard to ferric strength, except in one case, 
while in two samples the ferric strength exceeded the officinal stan- 
dard. The difference in the color of the samples was quite noticeable, 
varying from pale lemon to rich brownish-orange, the depth of shade 
varying with the proportion of the iron and the amount of acid. Ac- 
cording to the present process, there is no excuse for any great deficiency 
in strength, as by further addition of the liquor it can readily be brought 
up to the standard, if from any cause the liquor should be wanting in. 
that direction. 



[Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, April i$th.) 
The following prescription was sent to Prof. J. M. Maisch by Jos. 
W. Hall, of Nashville, Tenn., who states in his letter that he noticed 
a reaction of a very singular nature take place when the various in- 
gredients were mixed together ; when first prepared the color being 
a dark-red, but changing in a few hours to a beautiful dark-green. It 
is as follows: 

212 A Singular Reaction. \ Am d™ r J%! rm - 

Syrup, pruni virg., .... f^ii 
Syrup, tolu., 

Syrup, scillae, . . . ad f^i 

Tinct. lobelias, 

Spt. aether, nitrosi, . . . .ad f£ii 

Morphias sulph., . . , . gr. i 

M. ft. solut. Sig., a teaspoonful. 

The writer was requested to look into the subject, and this was done 
with considerable interest as one point after another was developed. 

1st. The prescription was compounded as given above, when the 
effect of the change in color was distinctly observed, as noticed by 
Mr. Hall. 

2d. The various ingredients were put together without the syrup of 
wild cherry. No change in color was discovered on standing twenty- 
four hours. 

3d. All of the ingredients were mixed together, leaving out syrup of 
tolu. The change in color takes place on standing ; the mixture 
darkens and assumes a green tint. 

4th. In this, syrup of squill was omitted — all of the other ingredi- 
ents combined. The liquid becomes darker red, but does not change 
to green. 

5th. Tincture of lobelia was left out in this experiment. The 
change took place readily, the mixture becoming quite as green as in 
No. 1. 

6th, All of the ingredients were mixed together except the spirit of 
nitrous ether. The reaction did not take place — but little change was 

7th. Sulphate of morphia was omitted. The change in this case 
very decided. The mixture assumes a dark green color. 

These results pointed to the fact that syrup of wild-cherry, spirit of 
nitrous ether and syrup of squill were alone concerned in the reaction, 
with little if any interference on the part of tincture of lobelia. 

Spirit of nitrous ether and syrup of wild-cherry, when mixed to- 
gether, acquired a greater depth of color, but did not become green. 
When syrup of squill was added, however, the green tint began to de- 
velop, and when allowed to stand as long as in No. I, the shade was 
nearly the same. 

From the peculiar coloration and its method of development, the 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
May, 1876. 

A Singular Reaction. 


presence of iron in minute quantity was suspected in the syrup of 
squill and spirit of nitrous ether ; and, on applying the tests for this 
metal to the two preparations, as obtained from various sources, dis- 
tinct evidences of a minute quantity of iron were obtained. 

In order to show with what ease this contamination (it can hardly be 
called an adulteration) creeps into the preparation of spirit of nitrous 
ether, a small quantity was placed in a glass vessel and stirred for a 
few moments with an iron spatula, when a drop or two of solution of 
ferrocyanide of potassium was added — a characteristic blue precipitate 
resulted. The explanation is simple, sufficient acid being usually pres- 
ent in spirit of nitrous ether to act upon the metal and form a soluble 
salt. When a partly-worn tinned iron measure is used by the manu- 
facturer or wholesale dealer in measuring this preparation (as is often 
the case), a trace of this metal would surely be left in it, particularly if 
the liquid was allowed to stand in the measure any time. Commercial 
acetic acid, and even some of the finer grades, were found to contain 
slight traces of iron ; and hence, in syrup of squill, we have the metal 
present in minute quantity. 

Now, why does the green coloration appear ? Wild-cherry bark 
contains tannic and gallic acid, and these give, with small quantities of 
an iron salt, a dark-green coloration in the presence of an acid like 

In order to show that the tannic and gallic acids were concerned in 
producing the color, an infusion of wild-cherry was prepared carefully, 
by the U. S. P. formula, to which was added spirit of nitrous ether 
and syrup of squill in the same proportion as in the prescription. The 
same play of colors took place ; first, a deepening of the red, then 
gradually changing, until the dark-green appeared. The subsequent 
addition of a trace of iron still further deepened the coloration. 

Part of the same infusion was deprived of tannic acid by shaking it 
with hydrated sesquioxide of iron, until a small portion of the filtrate 
failed to give a coloration with a weak solution of an iron salt. When 
to this infusion the same proportion of spirit of nitrous ether and syrup 
of squill was added, as in the prescription, no change in color was ob- 
served, even after standing. 

The presence of a slight excess of acid favors the formation of the 
green coloration ; and when an alkaline solution is added, the green 
coloration disappears, and a slight precipitation takes place. 

214 Uva Ursi and Sprit of Nitre. { Am ^%f^ m - 

The examination of this subject furnishes another illustration of the 
necessity for the most scrupulous care, not only in making prepara- 
tions, but in guarding them from contamination after they are made. 
Although in this particular case, practically, no harm could possibly re- 
sult from the presence of the trace of iron, yet we see in it a cause for 
annoyance, and the prescription would very likely be returned by the 
patient with suspicions of an error in compounding. 



(Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting April 18.) 
Two communications have recently appeared in the " Druggists' 
Circular," asserting that sweet spirit of nitre and fluid extract of uva 
ursi would form, in some cases, an explosive mixture. Other ingre- 
dients were mentioned — syrup in the one case and fluid extract of buchu 
in the other, but the two former were supposed to be the dangerous 
agents. As every pharmacist has frequent occasion to mix these in- 
gredients, and no disturbance has ever before been made public, I was 
skeptical as to the reality of the startling phenomenon, and paid no 
attention to the first statement, but on the appearance of the second, 
proceeded to the following simple experiments, which any one can 
verify : 

1. Fluid extract of uva ursi, of my own make, about twenty months 
old ; sweet spirit of nitre, also of my own make, about a month old, 
and kept standing on crystals of potassium bicarbonate, to prevent 
any acidity. Two drachms of each were mixed, with no perceptible 
action of any kind. 

2. Fluid extract, made by Squibb, several years old ; spirit of nitre, 
as above, and result the same. 

3. To each of these mixtures was added about one drachm of dilute 
nitric acid, U. S. P. ; a decided effervescence at once occurred, the 
surface of the liquid being nearly covered with minute bubbles, with a 
decidedly nitrous odor. The reaction continued perhaps ten minutes, 
and would very likely have been more energetic in a larger quantity of 
the materials. 

It seems fair to conclude, therefore, that the liquids mentioned will 
not produce any disturbance if the spirit of nitre is in good condition ; 

Am M J a° y i ; r i8 P 76? rm } Simple Cerate.— Extr. Pruni Virg. FL 215 

but that if it is old atid strongly acid, effervescence will be produced 
which, if the ingredients are in considerable quantity and in a closed 
bottle, might amount to an explosion. As to the chemical reaction, I 
can offer no suggestion. 



The pharmacopoeia (and all works on pharmacy) tells us, after hav- 
ing melted and strained (if necessary) the cerate, to " stir constantly 
until cool." 

This method serves a good purpose for simple cerate, and may be 
used for nearly all ointments. 

For some time past I have been using a method recommended to 
me, years ago, by an old apothecary (and said to be employed by per- 
fumers in making pomatum), which consists in letting the melted mass 
cool down undisturbed, and, when perfectly cold, with a pestle gradually 
work your way from the top (by rubbing) down and through the mass. 
The ointment treated in this way is softer, never gets hard on its sur- 
face, and, as asserted by physicians, is more quickly absorbed by the 
skin than when made by " stirring constantly till cool which injunc- 
tion, by the way, seldom is complied with. 

There will, of course, be raised one great objection to this method ; 
with lots of more than a couple of pounds it becomes rather a hard 
task to move the pestle round at last. 



Having experienced great difficulty in obtaining a satisfactory fluid 
extract of wild cherry bark, it occurred to me that a modification of 
the officinal process might with advantage be adopted, to obviate the 
difficulty, and herewith I present the following formula, which yields 
an extract superior in its sensible properties to that of the " Pharma- 
copoeia " : 

Take of Wild cherry bark, in coarse powder, . 64 oz. (troy) 

Water, .... 2 pints 

Glycerin, . . . .1 pint 

Alcohol, 95 per cent., . . sufficient quantity 

Sweet almonds, blanched, . . 8 oz. (av.) 

i\ 6 Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. { Km u^ r ,'lj6 TTti ' 

Mix glycerin and water, moisten the bark with 2 pints of the mix- 
ture, allow it to stand in a closely covered vessel for four days, then 
pack in a conical glass percolator and pour on the remainder of the 
mixture ; when this has disappeared from the surface, gradually pour 
on the alcohol until 48 fluidounces have been obtained, and set this 
portion aside. Continue the percolation with the alcohol until 80 fluid- 
ounces more have been obtained. Evaporate this by means of a water- 
bath to 16 fluidounces ; allow it to cool. The almonds having been 
reduced to a smooth paste, mix this last portion with them and add to 
the first portion reserved, in a closely stopped bottle, and agitate the 
whole together. Allow it to remain in contact for 48 hours, with fre- 
quent agitation ; then prepare some paper pulp, and place in a filter in 
a glass funnel, adding the mixture gradually to the pulp, stirring upon 
each addition, so as to get the mixture thoroughly incorporated with 
the pulp, observing to keep the funnel closely covered during the pro- 
cess — the result being an extract of a brilliant reddish-brown color,, 
possessing all the virtues of the bark in a very marked degree. 



Combination of sulphate of quinia with phenol. — Mr. S. Contot has 
noticed, some time ago (Lyon med. XIX. 480 and 666), the existence 
of such a compound, and now gives a fuller account, from which we 
take the following : 

A solution of carbolic acid, in an equal weight of 80 to 93 per cent, 
alcohol, is added to a saturated alcoholic solution of quinia sulphate ; 
in a short time the new compound will commence to crystallize in 
wart-like masses. It is also obtained by adding to an alcoholic solu- 
tion of carbolic acid and quinia some sulphuric acid. The names of 
carbolated (phenated) sulphate of quinia, or sulphate of phenol-quinia are- 
suggested to distinguish it from the sulpho-phenate of quinia. It 
crystallizes from water in star-like groups composed of short needles, 
has neither the odor nor the caustic properties of phenol, after having 
been washed with ether and recrystallized, and by the action of 
chlorine water and ammonia, barium chloride, and concentrated nitric 
acid, followed by ammonia, indicates the presence of quinia, sulphuric 
acid and phenol, in the latter case by the color of ammonium picrate -> 
but neither hypochlorites, bromine or hypobromites indicate the pres- 

Am k J a°y, r i8^6 arm '} Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. 217 

ence of phenol, nor is the quinia salt affected by ammonia, in certain 
proportions. The salt, which possesses considerable antiseptic proper- 
ties, has the formula C 20 H 24 N 2 O 2 ,SO 3 .C 20 H 24 N 2 O 2 ,C 6 H 6 O+7H 2 O, 
the water is given off at a temperature of 150 C (302 F.). It is 
more soluble in water than quinia sulphate, but almost insoluble therein 
in the presence of free phenol ; sulphuric acid renders the salt very 
soluble without separating phenol, but diminishes the fluorescence con- 

The insolubility of sulphate of phenol-quinia may serve to separate 
this alkaloid from cinchonia, the sulphate of which does not produce 
an insoluble compound with carbolic acid. — V Union Phar., 1876, pp. 


To color arsenic for ordinary sales as a rat's bane, Grimaud of 
Poitiers proposes to mix 98 parts of arsenious acid, and one part each 
of ferrous sulphate and potassium ferrocyanide, all in the state of fine 
powder. The mixture assumes a light blue color and is said to possess 
an odor of bitter almonds, without interfering with the poisonous 
properties of the arsenic. — Bull. Comm. del' Union Phar., 1876, 16. 

Fowler's Solution. — Having observed a gradual deposition of arsenious 
acid, Mr. Ch. Meniere kept 100 grams of this preparation for three 
years, and then collected from it 15 centigrams of arsenious acid, which 
had been deposited in the form of needles upon the separated volatile 
oil. — Rep. de Phar., 1876, 65. 

Quinia in Hypodermic Injections. — S. Limousin has found that the 
acid hydrobromate of quinia has the composition C 20 H 2i H 2 O 2 ,2HBr. 
3H 2 0, and is soluble in 9 parts of water at 15 C (59°F). The neu- 
tral salt C 20 H 24 H 2 O 2 .HBr.H 2 O is less soluble than the ordinary quinia 
sulphate. The corresponding sulphovinates, however, which the au- 
thor proposed for use in hypodermic injections in 1 873^ contain about 
the same amount of quinia as the corresponding hydrobromates (75 to 
76 per cent, quinia in the neutral, and 56 to 60 per cent, in the acid 
salt) ; but they are more soluble than the latter, which, however, are 
preferable in all such cases, where the effects of bromine are likewise 
needed. — Ibid., 113, 115. 

Salicylic Acid in Solutions for Hypodermic Injections. — S. Limousin has 
observed that a solution of 0*20 grams of morphia hydrochlorate in 10 
grams of distilled water, was spoiled in three weeks with the separation 

218 Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. { Am ^ay"'i5 7 h 6 arm * 

of numerous crystals and slimy flocks, while a solution of the same 
strength remained clear and limpid after the addition of 2 centigrams 
of salicylic acid, which the author regards as superior to the various 
agents previously recommended for the same purpose. Salicylate of 
morphia, requiring about 150 parts of water for solution, is not adapted 
for hypodermic injections. — Ibid., 129. 

Sodium Copaivate is prepared according, to L. Geza, by distilling 
copaiva balsam with water to remove the volatile oil and purifying the 
resulting resin by repeated solution in rectified petroleum and strong 
alcohol. The crystallized copaivic acid is then combined with soda. 
This compound has been successfully tried by Dr. Zlamal, in the form 
of pills made by using 2 parts of sodium copaivate with 1 part of dex- 
trin and aromatising with oil of sandal wood. — Phar. Post., 1876, No. 6. 

Chlorinated Lime and Glycerin. — In preparing an ointment composed 
of 10 grams of the former and 30 grams of the latter, Schiedmeyr 
triturated the dry chlorinated lime with about its own weight of gly- 
cerin, when heat and a yellowish-brown gas, having a penetrating, but 
not disagreeable odor, was evolved, and a hard, brown mass was left in 
the mortar. If all the glycerin was added at once, a similar effect was pro- 
duced, except that the mass had the consistency of an ointment. By 
using moist chlorinated lime, the brown compound is not formed, and 
the ointment retains the odor of chlorine. Chlorinated lime should 
therefore be first triturated with water before the glycerin is added. — 
Zeitschr. Oest. Apoth. Ver., 1876, No. 9. 

Syrupus ferri lactophosphatis. — C. Jehl dissolves 50 grams of ferrous 
sulphate and 150 grams sodium phosphate, each separately, in 750 
grams of water, mixes the solutions, washes the precipitate rapidly, and 
dissolves it in 60 grams of concentrated lactic acid ; sufficient water 
is now added to make the weight of the solution 1,882 grams, and the 
syrup made with the addition of 3,586 grams of sugar. The syrup 
may be flavored with 50 grams of spirit of lemon. Twenty grams of 
the syrup contain o*i gram of ferrous phosphate. 

Syrupus ferri et calcii lactophosphatis. — The same author prepares a 
solution of ferrous phosphate from 9-25 grams of ferrous sulphate and 
2775 grams of phosphate of sodium, in 11 grams of concentrated 
lactic acid ; also, a solution of 13*3 grams of phosphate of calcium in 
24 grams of the lactic acid and 100 of water. The two solutions are 

Am Ma y U , r i8 P 7 6? rm '} Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. 219 

mixed, sufficient water added to make 388 grams, and the syrup 
finished by the addition of 625 grams of sugar and 15 grs. of spirit of 
lemon. Twenty grams of the syrup contain 0*2 phosphate of calcium 
and o*i of ferrous phosphate.— Schwei%. Woch. f. Phar., 1876, No. 7. 

Indelible Ink. — 200 grams tartaric acid are dissolved in 1 litre of hot 
water; in one-half of the solution dissolve 100 grams of oily anilin ; 
add the other half, and then 100 grams of chlorate of potassium. 
Allow the solution to cool and subside until next day ; filter from 
the bitartrate, and bring the liquid to the density of 7 B. Thicken 
sufficiently with gum arabic, and add to each litre 20 grams of copper 
sulphate, dissolved in little water. This ink may be at once used for 
printing muslin and other fabrics, upon which the black color will be 
perfectly developed by bleaching liquids. Chlorate of copper is also 
used for writing upon zinc used for signs and labels exposed to the 
weather. — Ibid., No. 10. 

Liquid Glue. — One part of phosphoric acid, specific gravity 1*120, 
diluted with 2 parts of water, is nearly neutralized with ammonium 
carbonate, one part of water added, and then, in a porcelain vessel, 
sufficient glue dissolved in the liquid to obtain a syrupy consistence. It 
must be kept in well-closed bottles. The addition of glycerin or sugar 
would cause the glue to gelatinize. — Chem. Centralbl., 1876, No. 6. 

To prevent the cracking of glue by heat or extreme dryness, the addi- 
tion to the solution of some calcium chloride is recommended, which 
retains sufficient moisture to obviate this inconvenience. Thus prepared, 
glue can also be used upon glass and metallic surfaces. — Ibid., No. 9. 

Waterproof varnish for paper, &c, is obtained by precipitating a solu- 
tion of tallow or resin soap by aluminum, iron or copper sulphate, and 
dissolving the precipitate in a liquid hydrocarbon, or in carbon bisul- 
phide.—/^., No. 8. 

The estimation of tannin, by Carpene's method, has been modified by 
J. Barbieri as follows, whereby correct results are obtained : The tan- 
nin solution is precipitated by an excess of an ammoniacal solution of 
zinc acetate, the entire mixture heated to boiling, evaporated to 
two thirds, and filtered after cooling ; the precipitate is dissolved 
in diluted sulphuric acid, filtered, if necessary, and then titrated with 
solution of potassium permanganate, which has been previously titrated 
with commercial tannin. The results are said to be exact. — Apoth. 
Zeitung, 1876, No. 8, from Ber. d. d. Chem. Ges. 

2io Selections from the Banish Journals. { Am k J a > u ) r l8 p 7 6 arrn ' 



'Telegraphy by means of Tuning-Forks. — P. la Cour (Denmark) has invented a new 
telegraph apparatus (June, 1874), 1 which bids fair to play an important role at no 
distant future. . It is based on the fact that when a tuning-fork, by its vibrations, 
closes and opens an electrical circuit, another tuning-fork, connected with it by the 
wire — provided it have the same pitch — will be made to vibrate. Any number of 
differently pitched tuning-forks may be connected with others by the same single 
wire, and only the corresponding ones (the isochronous) can be made to vibrate. 

The practicability of the above method of telegraphing was demonstrated on the 
wire between Copenhagen and Fredericia (390 kilometers, about 250 miles). (The 
description of the instrument, the advantages accruing from its use and the detailed 
experiments will be found in "Ann. de Chim. et de Phys.," 1875, P- 284). — Arch, 
for Ph., 1875, P- 466. 

A New Kind of Spontaneous Combustion. — " Pharm. Centralh.," 1875, No. 25, 
reports a case of spontaneous combustion arising in a box of chipped logwood, 
which probably had been packed in a moist state. — Ibid., p. 480. 

Arsenic. — Prof. Binz, in Bonn, calls, again, attention to Bettendorff's test (see 
"Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1871 (xliii), p. 222) for arsenic, as the easiest for the physi- 
cian. Put a piece of the suspected substance in a test-tube, pour over it concent- 
rated muriatic acid, add a few crystals of protochloride of tin, and heat 5 arsenic, 
if present, will be reduced, and thrown down as a dark-brown powder. — Ibid., 
p. 483. 

Caoutchouc in Affections of the Lungs. — Electuary of caoutchouc has again been 
recommended in phthisis, etc., by Drs. Varick and Calver. Dissolve, by macera- 
tion, 30 grams finely cut caoutchouc in 60 grams oil of turpentine 5 strain, and mix 
l\ grams with 45 grams of sugar and 75 grams of honey. One teaspoonful of this 
electuary contains about 0*12 gram of caoutchouc. It is said to prevent night- 
sweats, blood-spitting and emaciation. — Ibid., p. 495, from Fharm. Centralh., 1875, 
No. 41. 

Infants^ Food. — Dr. H. Muller has examined into the quality of the different kinds 
of food for infants, and came to the following results : Liebigs food is somewhat 
difficult and tedious of preparation, so that, as a rule, the soup is seldom properly 
made. The different modifications that exist are much more easy to use, but they 
do not keep as well, and do not taste as agreeable as the original food. One serious 
objection is found to Liebig's food — its exclusive use predisposes children to rachitis, 
since it does not contain sufficient bone food. 

Nestles mother s milk and (still more, a modification of it) Faust and Schuster's 
Gottingen infant meal, Dr. M. considers the best substitute for mother's milk. It 
contains in 100 parts: n'51 protein substances, 79*61 carbohydrates, i*8o inorganic 

iThe same or a similar apparatus has recently been on exhibition at the Franklin Institute, in Phila- 
delphia. — Editor Amer. Jour. Phar. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
May, 1876. 

Centennial Exhibition. 


salts, 673 water (von Uslar and Polstorff). The inorganic salts contain in 100 
parts: 3170 phosphoric acid, 29*78 potash (Freitag). — Ibid., 1876, p. 12. 

Restoration of Faded Writing. — Moisten the paper a little with water, and brush 

over it a solution of sulphydric ammonia. Since most inks contain iron, it is easy 

to understand that there will be formed sulphide of iron, which is black. — Ibid., 
p. 22, from Industrie-El. 

Arsenical Poisoning. — Scolosuboff has found that, both in slow and rapid poison- 
ing, the arsenic accumulates chiefly in the brain, spinal marrow and the nerves. On 
the contrary, comparatively little will be found in the liver and muscles generally. 
A dog had, in thirty-four days, taken, in increasing doses, from 5 mgrms. to 
15 cgrms. arsenious acid. On examination, was found: 

In 100 grams, muscles, 0*00015 grams. 

" liver, 0*00271 " 

" brain, 0*00885 " 

" spinal marrow, 00932 " 

or 1 : io*8 : 36*5 : 37*3. — Ibid., p. 24, from Pharm. Centralh., 1875, No. 45. 

Dita Bark. — ("Am. Jour. Phar.," 1873 ( x 1v)j P- 3*6) Jobst and Hesse have exam- 
ined this bark (from Echites scholaris, L. 5 Alstonia scholaris, Brown), and reported 
their results at some length in "Ann. d. Ch. und Ph.," vol. 178. After a descrip- 
tion of it, they mention ditain obtained by Gruppe in Manilla, and then detail their 
chemical investigation. The following new alkaloids, acids, etc., are found by them : 
Ditamin, echicautchin, echicerin, echicerinic acid, echitein, echiretin.- — Ibid., p. 27, 
from Pharm. Centralh., 1875, No. 49. 

Action of Borax as an Antiseptic. — Dumas and Schnezler state that they have found 
that borax coagulates the protoplasm of the cells, and in this way kills lower organ- 
isms; it becomes, then, easy to understand how it can act as an antiseptic. — Ibid., 
p. 30, fr ora Ann. d. Ch. et d. Phys., 1875, P« 543* 

Pharmacy in Denmark. — The Royal Board of Health, in reply to numerous peti- 
tions about permission to start new pharmacies, expresses its conviction that the 
public will undoubtedly be benefitted by competition even of drug stores, under cer- 
tain restrictions, and with due regard to existing regulations about surveillance, etc. 

It has been resolved to revise the existing poison-law, particularly with respect to 
the manifold uses active poisons of late years have been put to, both in manufactures 
and in the household. — Ibid., p. 39, etc. 


The Philadelphia College of Pharmacy will open their rooms for the convenience 
of visitors on the 8th of May. An Actuary, speaking English, French and Ger- 
man will be in attendance, between the hours of 9 A. M. and 6 P. M , to give such 
information as may be desirable to strangers visiting Philadelphia. 

Committee on Reception. 


Minutes of the College. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
May, 1876. 


Philadelphia, March 27th, 1876. 

The annual meeting of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy was held this day 
at the Hall of the College, No. 145 North Tenth street. 

The President, Dillwyn Parrish, occupied the chair, and twenty members were 

The minutes of the meeting of December, 1875, were read and, on motion,, 

The minutes of the Board of Trustees since the College meeting in December 
were also read by the Secretary of the Board, William C. Bakes, and, on motion, 

The annual report of the Librarian was read by him, and, on motion, accepted. 

The Librarian respectfully reports that since last report he has bound the theses of the class that 
was graduated in the Spring of 1875. 

There are now fifty volumes of these in the Library. 

During the past year the arrangement of the entire Library has been completed, each book ticketed 
and numbered, and a new registration of the books has been made ; the books are arranged in five 
classes, to wit : 


Class A — Encyclopaedias, Public Documents and Reports 344 

Class B — Chemistry 220 

Class C — Pharmacopoeias, Dispensatories, Formularies, Materia Medica, Pharmacy, Botany 255 

Class D — Miscellaneous 313 

Class E and F — Serial publications 1131 

There have been added during the past year about sixty volumes, many of them being exchanges 
made with the "Journal of Pharmacy," and of a character suitable for our Library, while in other 
instances a number of volumes have been purchased to complete sets which were in part already on our 

Our Library now comprises about twenty-three hundred volumes, not counting duplicates; several 
works we have in a number of editions, but the committee would be glad if any of the members can 
furnish some of the older editions of the United States Dispensatory, there being only three of the 
thirteen editions issued now catalogued by us. 

The arrangement alluded to in the early part of this report will enable any one to ascertain whether 
any treatise upon a particular subject is in our Library with but little trouble, and it is hoped that the 
labor which has been bestowed upon the Library will be found conducive to the advantage of those of 
our members who may require to consult the volumes. THOS. S. WIEGAND, Librarian. 

March 27, 187b. 

Wm. B. Webb alluded to the labors of the Librarian, and recognized the value 
of his services in that department. He hoped that gentlemen would express their 
appreciation of the work performed. Several members joined in this opinion, and 
a general recognition of the value of his services was expressed. 

Professor Remington, Curator, offered the following report, which was read and 
accepted : 

The Curator would report progress in the work of refitting and adding to the cabinet. Although 
much still remains to be accomplished, it is confidently hoped that in a few months it will be in a present- 
ible condition. 

The thanks of the College are due to Powers & Weightman for their liberal offer to refit the chemi- 
cal cases, and to Hance Brothers & White for their gift of many valuable specimens of indigenous drugs, 
and to Messrs. Webber, Taylor and Holden, members of the class of 1876, for their assistance in arrang- 
ing the specimens in the bottles. JOSEPH P. REMINGTON, Curator. 

March 27, 187b. 

Am M^, r ',f 7 6 ar,n " } Minutes of the College, 223 

The Committee on Publication, through Professor Maisch, presented the follow- 
ing report of their labors during the past year, showing a very satisfactory result. 
The report was accepted. 

To the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy : 

The Publishing Committee respectfully report that they have attended to the various duties incum- 
bent upon them, as will be seen from the annexed reports. From the Editor's report it will be seen that 
the number of original essays published in the "Journal" during the twelve months was ninety-six, of 
which number ten were abstracts from theses. The number of original papers considerably exceeds that 
of former years, and the committee bespeak for the "Journal" a continuance of this gratifying interest 
on the part of its readers, and more particularly of the members of this College. At the Pharmaceutical 
Meetings twenty papers were read, and the request made last year is herewith renewed, that the members 
not only endeavor to make it convenient to attend these meetings, but likewise that, if possible, they give 
notice beforehand to the Registrar of such subjects which they may intend to bring forward for discus- 
sion. Such previously given notice has invariably resulted in a full attendance and participation in the 

The financial affairs of the "Journal" may be called satisfactory. For further particulars the 
committee refer to the Editor's and Business Editor's reports. 

HENRY N. RITTENHOUSE, Chairman Publishing Committee. 
Philadelphia, March 27th, 187b. 

The Editor's report to ihe Publishing Committee was read, and as it gives a 
general account of the number of original essays which appeared in the "Journal," 
its publication will be a matter of interest and serve to stimulate members and 
others to continue their contributions to its pages. 

To the Publishing Committee : 

The Editor respectfully reports that the "Journal" has been promptly issued every month and that 
the interest manifested in it by its readers has b~en considerably in excess of former years, as will be seen 
by the comparative account given below, and by the fact that several numbers were issued consisting almost 
exclusively of original matter. The Pharmaceutical Meetings have contributed very essentially to this 
gratifying result, not less than twenty papers of more or less interest and importance having been con- 
tributed to the "Journal" from this source alone. The Editor would urge upon the members of the 
College to continue their interest in the Pharmaesutical Meetings and the "Journal" by reporting their 
observations either verbally or preferably in writing, and thereby contribute to the general stock of knowl- 
edge. It may safely be expected that during the coming summer ample opportunities for study and obser- 
vation will be afforded through the International Exposition, and it is to be hoped that this opportunity 
will not be lost sight of by the members. The invitation extended last year to report to the Registrar 
the subjects of the papers to be read, in advance of the meetings, has only in a few instances been respon- 
ded to; it is now renewed in the hope that in the future members will more frequently avail themselves 
of the opportunity to give notice in advance of the subjects intended for discussion. 

During the year closing with the March number, there have been published in the "Journal," ex- 
clusive of authors' printed communications, original translations, abstracts and editorials, ninety-six 
original papers, which is seventeen and twelve papers more than appeared in the "Journal" during the 
two preceding years. Among these numbers are included abstracts of ten theses, against sixteen and 
eighteen during the preceding years. The total number of original essays, exclusive of theses, were, there- 
fore, for the year ending March, 1874, sixty-six ; March, 1875, sixty-three, and March, 1876, eighty-six. Of 
the latter number, twenty of which were read at the Pharmaceutical Meetings, sixteen treated of subjects 
belonging to materia medica, twenty to chemistry, thirty-five to pharmacy and fifteen to subjects of more 
general interest. Of the ten theses seven were devoted to subjects of materia medica, two to pharmacy 
and one to chemistry. The total of ninety-six papers were contributed by seventy-two authors, against 
fifty-two up to March, 1875, and sixty to March, 1874. During the past year, three authors contributed 
five papers each, two authors three papers each, and eight authors two papers each, the remaining fifty- 
seven papers having been written by as many contributors. Sixteen of the authors are members of the 
College and contributed twenty-seven papers. 

The amount of original matter which was placed at the Editor's disposal during the past year ren- 
dered the condensation of most of the interesting material found in other journals necessary ; and if, as is 
to be hoped, the interest of original contributors in the "Journal" does not slacken during the coming 
year, there will be much of original matter available ; for, as far as can be judged from a hasty examina- 
tion of the theses presented at the last examination, a larger number than'usual appear to be adapted for 
publication in the iorm of abstracts. 

224 Minutes of the College. 

In this eonnection it is proper to mention that, aside from the reports of their meetings, two papers 
have been published after having been read before the New York Alumni Association of the Philadelphia 
College of Pharmacy, a body composed of graduates of this College residing in the city of New York 
and vicinity. JOHN M. MAISCH, Editor. 

Philadelphia, March 24th, 187b. 

The Business Editor's report to the Committee on Publication, detailing all the 
operations of his department, was read by Mr. Bullock. It is a very satisfactory 
exhibit, and continues to show the judicious management of Mr. Wolle. 

Mr. Bullock further read the rep,ort of the Treasurer of the Publishing Com- 
mittee. It shows a sound financial condition, and exhibits a steady improvement 
from year to year. 

The report was, on motion, accepted. 

The chairman of the Committee on the Sinking Fund was rendered by Thos. S. 
Wiegand, showing a balance in his hands of $907.94. 

Mr. Bullock, on behalf of the Committee on the Centennial, reported subscrip- 
tions nearly sufficient to accomplish their purposes, and with a slight effort on the 
part of those who have not yet contributed, the amount necessary would soon be 
obtained. It was the intention of the committee to fit up the College generally. 

A gentleman, a native of this city, had been engaged by them to attend daily at 
the College during the Exhibition, who is conversant with the French and German 

The committee would request the members to interest themselves, and call at the 
College and witness the work being performed. 

A printed letter from the " National College of Pharmacy,'''' dated Washington, 
March 22d, 1876, and addressed to this College, was read. This letter treated upon 
the disagreement which has lately arisen between some colleges of pharmacy 
in the United States, relative to the conferring of degrees and titles. The matter 
was commented on by Messrs. Maisch, Bullock and Remington, but as the subject 
was thought to be one requiring more mature deliberation than could be given to it 
at this meeting, a motion was made and adopted to refer the letter to the Board of 
Trustees for their consideration. 

George W. Earl, a member of the College, placed at the disposal of the Com- 
mittee on Centennial Preparations one hundred pounds of white lead, which was, 
on motion, accepted, and Mr. Earl is entitled to the thanks of this College for the 

A letter from William Stahler, of Norristown, Pa., communicating the intelli- 
gence of the death of J. Howard McCrea, a member of the College, was read and 
referred to the Committee on Deceased Members. 

The Treasurer reported the name of a member who was five years in arrears to 
the College 5 on motion his name was ordered to be stricken from the roll. 

The Treasurer further reported that August Hohl had sent in his resignation, 
which was, on motion, accepted. 

Prof. Remington, in a few suitable remarks, presented to the College, from a 
number of members, a portrait in oil of the late Professor Procter, stating that it 
was previously the intention to have had a bust prepared, but owing to some difficul- 
ties, which finally proved insurmountable, the project was abandoned, and the 

f Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ May, 1876. 

Mm i^^ m '} Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. 225 

portrait was substituted in its stead. He alluded to Mr. Andrew Blair as having 
assisted in the undertaking. 

On motion of Mr. Boring the portrait was accepted, and the thanks of the Col- 
lege were ordered to be tendered to Prof. Remington and those who assisted him 
in the matter. 

Prof. Maisch called the attention of the College to the Annual Meeting of the 
American Pharmaceutical Association in September next, and suggested the ap- 
pointment of a committee of five to act in conjunction with the Local Secretary of the 
Association, Dr. A. VV. Miller, in making such arrangements as may be necessary 
for the accommodation of the association. 

The motion was adopted, and the President appointed Messrs. J. M. Maisch, 
E. M. Boring, Wm. Mclntyre, Andrew Blair and Joseph P. Remington the com- 
mittee. On motion of Mr. Bullock, the committee were authorized to employ such 
help as they might deem necessary. 

Prof. Maisch again appealed to the members present, as well as to those absent, 
to come forward and help to arrange the Herbarium, which was now in an advanced 
state of progress. Mr. Mattison moved thit Prof. Maisch be empowered to employ 
such help as he might think proper to complete the undertaking, which motion was 

This being the annual meeting, an election for officers, trustees and standing 
committees was ordered. Charles Wirgman and Albert P Prown, acting as tellers, 
reported the following gentlemen unanimously elected to the various positions 
enumerated below : 

President — Dillwyn Parrish. 

First Vice President — Charles Bullock. 

Second Vice President — Robert Shoemaker. 

Treasurer — Samuel S. Bunting. 
Recording Secretary — William J. Jenks. 

Corresponding Secretary — Alfred B. Taylor. 

Board of Trustees— Robert Bridges, M.D., John M. Maisch, Daniel S.Jones, Thomas S. Wiegand, 
James T. Shinn, T. Morris Perot, William B. Webb, Joseph P. Remington. 

Publication Committee— John M. Maisch, Henry N. Rittenhouse, Thomas S. Wiegand, James T. 
Shinn, Charles Bullock. 

Sinking Fund Committee— Thomas S. Wiegand, T. Morris Perot, James T. Shinn. 

Editor— John M. Maisch. 

Librarian — Thomas S. Wiegand. 

Curator — Joseph P. Remington. 

There being no further business to claim the attention of the meeting, then, on 
motion, adjourned. William J. Jenks, Secretary. 


The seventh regular meeting of the session was held April 18th, 1876, A. P. 
Brown in the chair. The minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved. 
Prof. Maisch made the following donations to the library and museum : "Proceed- 
ings of the Seventh Annual Meeting of the California Pharmaceutical Society, also 
of the Third Annual Meeting and Commencement Exercises of the California Col- 


226 Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. { Am M J ay, r 'i8?6. rm ' 

lege of Pharmacy, etc." And "The Little Book of German, a High School Primer," 
by C C. Schaeffer, late Professor of the German language in the University of 
Pennsylvania. From Geo. W. Kennedy, Pottsville, " Cylindrical Specimens of 
Rock Borings from the Pennsylvania Diamond Drill Company." From J. U, 
Lloyd, Cincinnati, resin of podophyllum, — fluid extract gossypium herbaceum 
from fresh bark, crystals from prickley ash bark, some roots illustrating a bale of 
hydrastis canadensis, and carbonate of potassium which had been sold (probably 
by mistake) for bromide of sodium. In regard to these Mr. Lloyd writes : " The 
resin exists in podophyllum peltatum, and is distinguished by being soluble in ether, 
while that prepared by the U. S. P. will but partially dissolve in this menstruum. 
It is being experimented with to ascertain its value as a medicinal agent. 

"The crystalline substance marked from ' prickley ash bark 1 is a proximate or- 
ganic substance which exists in considerable amount in the barks of xanthoxylum 
fraxineum. It has never been experimented with as a medicine that I am aware of. 
It is tasteless, colorless, insoluble in cold water, very slightly soluble in boiling water j 
somewhat in cold alcohol ; quite soluble in boiling alcohol. Nitric acid turns it yellow, 
and dissolves a small amount, turning yellow. Sulphuric acid dissolves it freely, 
forming a beautiful transparent deep-red solution; water added to the solution pro- 
duces a white precipitate; the liquid in which it is suspended is colorless. The 
precipitate presents the exact properties of the original substance. At 212 F. the 
sulphuric acid solution decomposes, sulphurous acid being evolved freely and a 
black precipitate formed. : When water is added and the mixture thrown on a filter* 
the filtrate passes colorless. It will not reduce an alkaline solution of sulphate of 
copper. When boiled with dilute sulphuric acid, and tested for glucose, there is no 
reaction with the copper solution. It will not form salts with dilute acids. Solu- 
tion of caustic potassa does not seem to affect it. 

"The fluid extract of gossypium is a specimen of 160 bottles I have distri- 
buted to practicing physicians in our hospitals and over the country. I trust to be 
able to learn something definite in regard to the preparation to present in my report 
to the American Pharmaceutical Association." 

" A lot of about 500 lbs. of hydrastis canadensis was recently offered for sale in 
Cincinnati. Upon examination, it proved to be about half beth root (trillium pen- 
dulum) ; while mixed throughout the entire mass was serpentaria, cypripedium, 
sanguiniaria, may-apple and other substances. The question is: 'Can njje ever do 
avjay voith this loose business Will there ever be a universal demand for prime 
indigenous botanical medicines? Must those who will furnish good medicinal roots 
and barks be compelled to compete with traffickers of this description? The above 
example is but one of many." 

Prof. Remington read a paper on "a singular reaction in a prescription" (see 
page 211). The Professor had continnued his experiments, and the opinion ex- 
pressed at the last meeting was confirmed. The presence of some free acid is neces- 
sary, and if neutralized, the color will disappear ; the green color is due to the 
yellow color of the syrup, and to the blue of the tannin and iron reaction. 

Prof. Maisch exhibited a sample of belladonna ointment, which, at the house of the 
patient, had separated into a bright, pale-green lower layer, the upper stratum be- 
ing of a brownish color. It had, probably, been subjected to changes in temperature. 

Am May, r 'i8 7 h 6! rm "} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 227 

Prof. Maisch exhibited, from Walter E. Bibby, ammoniac in powder, retained in 
this condition by admixture with sugar of milk ; also mercury one part and sugar of 
milk two parts, rubbed together in a dry mortar without any. further addition. The 
extinction of the mercury being rapid, and little labor required, this process suggests 
itself as a convenient way of getting the various preparations of mercury. Mr. 
Bibby will continue these experiments and report at the next meeting. 

Dr. Miller exhibited spermaceti obtained from oil of rose, one fluidounce, pur- 
chased as the best oil in the market, having yielded eight grains of the adulterant. 

J. T. Farr inquired for a process for keeping powdered camphor. The use of 
glycerin has recently been recommended, but for large quantities the process of 
sublimation into a large chamber, as suggested by J. C. Lowd (" Proc. Am. Phar. 
Asso.", 1871, p. 441), appears to be the best known. 

Prof. Remington called attention to the fact that mustard would sometimes fail 
to act from the skin being insusceptible. 

The statements by two writers to the Drug. Circ, reporting the occurrence of an 
effervescence on mixing spirit of nitre and fluid extract of ura uris, being referred 
to, Prof. Maisch read a paper on this subject, which he had just received from M. 
S. Bidwell, Elmira, N. Y. (See page 214.) 

Dr. Miller exhibited gold-beater's skin, prepared in such manner as to be opaquj 
also, hog bladders thoroughly cleansed for druggists 1 use. 

Prof. Remington spoke of a new kind of lint which is prepared by a physician of 
this city. It is corrugated, thick white paper, strong and elastic, absorbent, and 
may be made styptic. 

On motion, a vote of thanks was given to the contributors of specimens and 

William McIntyre, Registrar. 


American Pharmaceutical Association — The following report has been 
made by the Committee on the Ebert Prize : 

To the President of the American Pharmaceutical Association : 

The Committee on the "Ebert Prize" respectfully report that they have exam- 
ined the papers presented at the last meeting of the Association, and found the 
majority of them to be creditable to their authors and to the Association in whose 
"Proceedings" they have been published. 

The conditions governing the award, as stipulated by its founder, are such that 
the majority of the papers offered to the Association, although valuable and instruc- 
tive, do not come within the scope intended, as competing for the award. A criti- 
cal examination of the papers resulted in limiting the number to those on phos- 
phoric acid and on pancreatin. Regarding these, the committee would respect- 
fully offer the following remarks: 

On phosphoric acid three valuable papers were presented, one of which, by Prof 

228 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. { Am ji^876 am ' 

Markoe, suggests a new process for preparing diluted phosphoric acid by the action 
of bromine upon phosphorus in the presence of nitric acid. This is an important 
modification of Pettenkofefs process, proposed in 1866, wherein the oxidation of 
the phosphorus is effected by the agency of iodine and subsequently water, some 
nitric acid being finally used to effect the complete oxidation of any phosphorous 
acid present. While the committee acknowledge the entire safety of the new pro- 
cess, if properly managed, yet they cannot refrain from taking into consideration 
the slowness of the process if conducted without very frequent supervision, but 
more especially the introduction of a new element of danger, requiring certain pre- 
cautions j and they cannot admit that any danger is connected with the more expe- 
ditious " Pharmacopoeia " process, even when carried out on a large scale, if the 
directions of the " Pharmacopoeia," particularly in regard to the strength of the 
nitric acid, are adhered to. 

Mr. Louis Dohme's and Prof. Remington's papers treat substantially of the same 
subjects, though the former enters more deeply into the conditions connected with 
the conversion of one into another variety of phosphoric acid. Both papers point 
out a notable difference in the strength of the dilute phosphoric acid as prepared by 
the two processes of the " Pharmacopoeia," and notice again the presence of impu- 
rities (soda) in the commercial glacial acid, which retard but do not prevent its 
complete change into orthophosphoric acid. 

Graham, in his classical investigations of the phosphoric acids, has shown that 
the glacial acid may become contaminated with impurities from the vessels in which 
it may be prepared, and such impurities were proven to exist in commercial acid 
as early as i860, ("Amer. Jour. Phar.," i860, p. 193). The introduction of soda 
for the purpose of hardening glacial phosphoric acid was first noticed by Brescius 
in 1867, and subsequently confirmed by Prof. Prescott and by the authors of the 
two papers mentioned. Regarding the conversion of meta- and pyrophosphoric into 
orthophosphoric acid, Graham has observed that it may be done by boiling their 
aqueous solutions, more rapidly in the presence of free mineral acids. The conver- 
sion with water alone is best effected, according to Littleton Thompson (1874), 
by heating the concentrated solution, for which purpose Mr. Dohme finds a temper- 
atureof from 280° to 300 F. to be required. 

The aqueous solutions of metaphosphates were found by Graham to be converted 
gradually into orthophosphates, but to effect a similar change of the pyrophosphates 
the presence of a mineral acid was found necessary, and, according to Weber, the 
most rapid change is produced by sulphuric acid. Reynoso, however, succeeded in 
1852, in changing the meta- and pyrophosphates readily into orthophosphates by 
exposing their solutions to a temperature of 280 C. (536 F.) As far as the 
behavior to ferric chloride is concerned, the conversion may be completed by pro- 
longed boiling in the presence of nitric acid. 

The function of the pancreatic liquid, according to Lehmann, was first recog- 
nized by Valentin to consist in transforming into sugar such starch which may arrive 
in the duodenum in an unaltered condition. The discovery, by Claude Bernard, 
that the pancreatic liquid is capable of decomposing neutral fats into fatty acids 
and glycerin, has been admitted by all subsequent investigators ; but the availability 
of this property for the purpose of digestion, as asserted by Bernard, has been 

Am M?y, r 'i8 > 7 6 arm ' } Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations, 229 

denied, Bidder and Schmidt, among others, proving that the decomposition of fats 
is prevented by the presence of acids and of the digestive fluids of the stomach. 
Dobell, in 1868, found the pancreatic liquid of pigeons always to possess an acid 
reaction, and to have the power of emulsionizing lard, but not to decompose it. In 
most cases, however, and more particularly after feeding, the reaction of the pan- 
creas is alkaline, and this condition, or the absolute absence of free acid, appears to 
be necessary to effect the decomposition of the neutral fats. Whether this is or is 
not an important function of the pancreas in the animal economy seems to be of 
minor importance for the question before this committee 5 but, since pancreatic 
preparations have been recommended and used in medicine, it was important to 
know whether or not the pancreatic liquid would lose its identity or remain unal- 
tered when in contact with the digestive principles of the stomach, and this ques- 
tion appears to be decided by the experiments of Prof. Scheffer, proving that the 
presence of free mineral acid, or of pepsin and free acid, not only prevents the ac- 
tion of the pancreatin, but that the latter is destroyed. 

The committee deem this short criticism (made in a friendly spirit) as necessary 
to explain the conclusion to which they have arrived, viz., that the results attained 
to by the authors of these papers have been foreshadowed by the investigations of 
previous writers to such an extent that they do not, in the judgment of the Com- 
mhtee, fairly come within the provisions prescribed by Mr. Ebert in founding the 
" Ebert Prize." 

Chas. Bullock, 
W. H. Pile, 
John M. Maisch. 

Philadelphia, March 17, 1876. 

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy. — The tenth annual commencement 
was held at Parker Memorial Hall, April 20th. After some introductory remarks, 
by President S. M. Colcord, an address was delivered by Francis Wharton, LL.D. 
The degree of graduate in pharmacy (Ph.G.) was conferred upon the follow- 
ing gentlemen : Benjamin F. Bradford, Wm. A. D. Cragin, Eugene F. Dunbai 
and Thos. R. A. Shannon, of Maine; Chas. D. Chase, Ashton E. Hemphill, Wm. 
M. Howes, Edward O. Punchard, Benjamin F. Smith and Duane B. Williams, ot 
Massachusetts, and John E. GrofF, of Rhode Island. The valedictory address was 
delivered by Prof. J. M. Merrick, B. Sc. 

New York Alumni Association of the Philadelphia College of 
Pharmacy. — At the annual meeting, held in Plimpton Hall, President P. W. 
Levering in the chair, several amendments were made to the constitution, and the 
following officers elected to serve the ensuing year : President, Henry S. Well- 
come; Vice Presidents, J. W. Wood, R. J. C. Williams; Secretary, Edward 
Plummer; Corresponding Secretary, Wm. Wilson; Treasurer, A. J. Ditman ; 
Members of the Executive Board, to serve three years, T. B. McElhenie, J. 
Messing ; Delegates to American Pharmaceutical Association, B. F. Fairchild, H. 
S. Wellcome, J. Jungmann, F. C. Von Weber, M. D., Wm'. Wilson, J. W. 
Wood. The retiring president delivered the annual address, giving a brief review of 

230 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. {^£"^6*""' 

the progress of pharmacy during the past century, and of this association during 
the past year, offering suggestions for extending the usefulness of it, after which 
the president elect, Mr. Wellcome, took the chair with acknowledgements. He 
presented some specimens of " Goa Powder," the remedy for ringworm which has 
been the object of some attention in the medical and pharmaceutical press during 
the past year Regarding the subject of stale and adulterated herbs he said that he 
had received communications from different sources verifying the statements made 
at a previous meeting on the subject (see page 141 of this volume). He exhibited 
a specimen of fluid extract of Eriodyction Califomicum, and stated that recent reports 
showed it to possess positive action in bronchial affections, and that it promised 
to become a valuable remedy. 

Mr. Wood read an interesting paper on the application of glycerite of starch, 
and urging its use in the place of Ung. Simplex, U. S. P. 

A note, by J. P. Routh, on the following prescription was read, some difficulty 
having been experienced by some in dispensing it : R, phosphorus, gr. vi, mucil. 
acacia, f^iii, oil gaultheria, f£i, tinct. nux vomica, f^vii, ferric tartrate, gx. He 
melted the phosphorus in absolute alcohol, agitated it until it became divided into 
minute globules, placed the test tube under a stream of cold water, continuing a 
brisk agitation until it was reduced to an almost pulverent form 5 this was added to 
the tartrate of iron, previously reduced to a fine powder, and triturated until the 
alcohol was entirely driven off ; next the oil of gaultheria and mucilage were 
added, then gradually the tincture of nux vomica 5 the result was a permanent 

The meetings of the association will hereafter be held quarterly, next one being 
in July, this best suiting the convenience of members. 

Alumni Association of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. — The 
Twelfth Annual Report, we are informed, is nearly ready for distribution, and will 
be sent to all members in the course of a few days. Any graduate, desiring a copy 
of it, can obtain it by addressing the Treasurer, E. C. Jones, Fifteenth and Market 
streets, Philadelphia. 

The Maryland College of Pharmacy conferred the degree of Graduate in 
Pharmacy upon the following gentlemen at the Commencement, held in the Con- 
cordia Opera House, March 29th : Frank Dorsey (thesis, Lead and its compounds), 
Millard S. Gore (Paullinia sorbilis), H. Kornmann (Oxygen), Rich. B. Winder, 
Jr. (Sodium), Frank A. Meikle (Toxicology), Chas. W. Gardner (Percolation), 
Wm. G. Hurd (Tobacco), Henry Dietrich (Fluid extracts), Gust. A. Knabe 
(Aeon. Napellus), Wm. Geo. Danim (Anthemis nobilis), Martin Lappe (Hydro- 
gen), Edward Jones (Cytisus scoparius), Frank P. Zimmer (Phosphates), J. C. 
Michael (Carbon), Frank L. Wallis (Nickel and its salts), Henry O. Damm (Asa- 
rum Canadense), J. Br. Baxley, Jr. (Datura Stramonium), John H. Brooke (Fluid 
extracts), and John Stauff (Glycerin). The degrees were conferred and the College 
prizes distributed by the President, Dr. Jos. Roberts, and the Alumni prize by Mr. 
L. Dohme. Prof. J. F. Moore delivered the Valedictory Address. 

A Vay" r i8 > 76? rm '} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 231 

At the regular meeting, held April 13th, the Hall Committee reported the pur- 
chase of the building and grounds heretofore known as the Grammar School, No. 
3, which will be fitted up for the permanent use of the College. 

At an adjourned meeting, held April 19th, Mr. J. F. Hancock read a paper on 
Modern methods in pharmacy (see p. 199), and exhibited a number of the modern 
preparations treated of. 

Mr. W. S. Thompson exhibited samples of pills of dried sulphate of iron, made 
with gum syrup and with glycerin, the latter being much smaller and handsomer. 

The precipitate from a mixture of Creuse's tasteless tincture of iron and phosphoric 
acid was exhibited, and, after some discussion, referred to Mr. L. Dohme for inves- 

The National College of Pharmacy at Washington, D. C, at its fifth 
annual meeting, received the reports of the various standing and special committees, 
and adopted the recommendation of Prof. Oldberg, to consolidate the offices of 
recording and corresponding secretary. The president, Mr. R. B. Ferguson, then 
delivered his annual address, after which the following officers were elected to serve 
during the ensuing year : President, R. B. Ferguson ; Vice Presidents, Chas. 
Becker and D. P. Hickling ; Secretary, J. C. Fill ; Treasurer, Wm. S. Thompson ; 
Curator, H. E. Kalussowski ; Board of Trustees, J. A. Milburn, W. G. 
Duckett, R. A. Bacon, W. B Entwisle, Walter Drew and J. R. Major. At an 
adjourned meeting the report of the Committee on Pharmaceutical Education, was 
after due consideration, referred to the Board of Trustees, and the chair announced 
the various standing committees for the current year. A report on amendments 
to the constitution and by-laws was discussed and referred back to the special 

Cincinnati College of Pharmacy. — The annual commencement took place 
at College Hall, on the evening of March 9th, the Germania Orchestra being in 
attendance. The exercises opened with prayer by the Rev. Henry D. Moore, after 
which the President, Dr. F. L. Eaton, conferred upon the following gentlemen the 
degree of graduate in pharmacy, (Ph.G ) : 

Chas. H. Angevine, J. A. Koller, Ed. A. Schmidt, 

Anton Boehmer, H. J. Marshall, W. G. Sheickner, 

Chas. Diehl, William Rendigs, C. D. Wangler, 

Geo. T. Greer, E. M. Roberts, Albert Wetterstroem. 

Emil Heun, J. W. Rossiter, 

The address on behalf of the Board of Trustees was delivered by Mr. S. A. 
Miller, whose excellent remarks on " The relation of pharmacy to other profes- 
sions " were well received. Prof. Fennel's medal, for the best examination in 
pharmacy, was awarded to William Rendigs 5 Prof. Wayne's, for the highest 
average in Materia Medica and botany, to Geo. T. Greer, and Prof. Judge's, for 
the best examination in chemistry, to J. W. Rossiter. The Alumni medal, for the 
best general average, was presented to George T. Greer, by the President of the 
Alumni Association, Mr. Jos. H. Feemster. Dr. Eaton, chairman of the Board of 

232 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. { Am M J a y, r i^ 7 6 arm " 

Trustees, then stated that in the contest for the Alumni prize it occurred that the 
averages of the two highest were so close that by only one-half per cent, difference 
did the fortunate contestant carry away the honor. In view of this fact, and of the 
sterling ability exhibited by Albert Wetterstroem (the unlucky contestant) during 
his collegiate career, the Board of Trustees had decided to award him a medal for 
general proficiency. 

The address, on behalf of the faculty, was delivered by Prof. E. S. Wayne, and 
the valedictory, on behalf of the graduating class, by Mr. Wm. Rendigs. 

The presentation, by Chas. Angevine, on behalf of the class, of one hundred 
dollars, to be appropriated to the building fund of a new college building, was a 
pleasant feature in the evening's programme. The exercises then closed with 
benediction by the Rev. Henry D. Moore. 

Later in the evening the Alumni entertained the new graduates, the faculty, 
board of trustees, and a number of invited guests, at their annual banquet. 

Alumni Association of the Cincinnati College of Pharmacy. — The 
following officers were elected at the annual meeting : President, Louis Schwab 5 
Vice Presidents, W. J. Rattcliff and Wm. Rendigs ; Treasurer, Theo. F. Nor- 
wood ; Secretary, A. W. Bain ; Corresponding Secretary, John E. Martin 5 Execu- 
tive Board, W. B. Strang, John Rielag, Geo. F. Greer and Anton Boehmer 5 
Delegates to the American Pharmaceutical Association, Jos. H. Feemster, Chas. 
F. Keener, L. Schwab, Theo. F. Norwood and Chas. P. Rendigs. 

Louisvill College of Pharmacy. — The following gentlemen, having passed 
a successful examination according to the rules of the College, were by the Board 
of Directors declared "Graduates in Pharmacy," March 13th. C. W. Newton, 
W. H. Patterson, George Stauber, H. Huecker, H. Langenhan, J. B. Baird, M. 
Von Beust, L. R. Williams and H. Vonderbeck (examined June, 1875). 

At the meeting of the Board of Directors, chosen at the annual meeting in March, 
the following officers were elected, viz., President, C.Lewis Diehl 5 Vice-Presidents, 
Emil Scheffer, Vincent Davis; Recording Secretary, Fred. C. Miller; Corresponding 
Secretary, Wm. G. Schmidt; Treasurer, Edward C. Pfingst ; Curator, James A. 
McAfee ; Directors, F. Lingelbach, C. Tafel, John Colgan, Wm. W. Smith and 
S. F. Dawes. 

Chicago College of Pharmacy. — The commencement exercises took place 
at the First M. E. Church, March 13th. The degree of Graduate in Pharmacy 
was conferred by President J. W. Mill upon the following candidates: Julius H. 
Wilson (oxide of zinc), Fred. C Werner (wild Tyam root), James M. Kirkley 
(glycyrrhizate of ammonium), La Motte Lovett (Pharmacopoeia), Geo. W. Hoyt 
(Tinct. chloride of iron), J. Leonard Mulfinger (Mercury), Alvin G. Hammer 
(Syr. Ferri Iodidi), Geo. H. Loesch (Calomel), E. Geo. F. Bischoff (Emulsions) , 
Almon R. Thurber (Medicated Waters). 

Addresses were delivered on behalf of the faculty by Prof. H. D. Garrison, and 
on behalf of the graduating class by Mr. J. H. Wilson. 

Am May^76. rm ' } Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. 233 

The Western Wholesale Drug Association is the title of a new associa- 
tion composed of" Wholesale Druggists in the Western States, and constituted in 
Indianapolis, March 15th and 16th, under the presidency of Mr. James Richardson, 
of St. Louis ; Messrs. A. B. Merriam, of Cincinnati, and N. H. Collins, of St. Louis, 
acting as Secretaries. Various committees appointed at the first session reported at 
the subsequent sessions. The employment of commercial travelers found no favor, 
but the total abolition of the system being impossible now, various rules in regard 
to these were adopted. The following resolution relating to sales on credit was 
adopted : 

Resolved, That this convention recommend that all credits be shortened as soon as possible, and as 
much as practicable, and that, as a rule, the goods sold for the least profit should be sold on the shortest 

The following recommendations from the Committee on Legislation were adopted : 

1. That, on the formation of a permanent association, the necessary steps be at once taken to put our- 
selves in communication and co-operalion with Philadelphia and other Eastern drug exchanges to secure 
such tariff regulations or charges, as may best promote our mutual interests, and that similar action b6 
taken regarding the matter of stamp tax, to render it as simple and as little burdensome as possible. 

2. That a united effort be made to relieve wholesale druggists selling alcohol, wines or liquors for medi- 
cinal purposes only (so far as they can control it) from the necessity of exhibiting the wholesale liquor 
dealer's sign, now required under the general law, and so far as possible to secure exemption from unin- 
telligent or unjust local enactments, or ordinances in regard to licenses. 

3. That the law now in operation in New York and some of our Western States, requiring those desir- 
ous of practicing pharmacy to pass a competent examination before being allowed to do so, is a protection 
to the wholesale druggist, as well as to the public, and we, therefore, seek to extend its benefits to those 
States which have not yet adopted it. 

4. That we emphatically condemn the adulteration of drugs and chemicals, especially such as are used 
as medicinal agents, and that we pledge ourselves to use our influence and our efforts to discourage it, 
and to elevate the standards of purity and excellence in such cases. 

After the adoption of the constitution and by-laws, Mr. James Richardson was 
elected President ; A. Peter, of Louisville, R. McReady, of Cincinnati, R. Brown- 
ing, of Indianapolis, Thomas K. Lord, of Chicago, and John Ewing, of Pittsburgh, 
Vice Presidents ; A. B. Merriam, Secretary ; and S. M. Strong, of Cleveland, Treas- 
urer 5 Board of Control — C. F. G. Meyer, St. Louis, chairman 5 C. C. Riekirt, Cin- 
cinnati ; R. A. Robinson, Louisville ; Henry W. Fuller, Chicago j D. R. Noyes, 
St. Paul. 

On motion of Mr. Noyes, of St. Paul, the following resolution was adopted : 

Resolved, That the association is in hearty sympathy with the retail drug trade, and seek to promote 
their interests as well as our own. 

The next meeting will be held in Chicago, on the second Wednesday of Febru- 
ary, 1877. 

Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain. — At the pharmaceutical meet- 
ing held March 1st, Mr. Rees Price read a paper on the preparation of ferrous phos- 
phate. The British " Pharmacopoeia " directs to precipitate 3 oz. of ferrous sul- 
phate by t\ oz. of sodium phosphate, in the presence of 1 oz. of sodium acetate, 
to stir well and filter, the acetate being added for the purpose of neutralizing the 
sulphuric acid set free, and liberating acetic acid, in which the ferrous phosphate is 
less soluble. The author found that, by following this process, 28*2 per cent, of 
iron remained dissolved in the filtrate, which could be precipitated by the further 

234 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations. { Km ^;^ xm ' 

addition of sodic phosphate ; and he proposes to omit the acetate and increase the 
phosphate to nearly three times the weight of the iron salt (42 parts of the former 
and 15 of the latter were found necessary), when the filtrate will scarcely contain 
traces of iron. 

Prof. Attfield was not previously aware that so large a proportion of iron could 
be lost by the " Pharmacopoeia " process, and explained the action of the excess of 
the phosphate used, as suggested by Mr. Price, by the conversion, through the lib- 
erated sulphuric acid, of the ordinary sodic phosphate Na 2 HP0 4 into NaH 2 P0 4 . 
This monosadium phosphate could be reconverted into the ordinary or disodium 
salt by reaction with carbonate of sodium. 

Mr. Brownen had obtained almost pure ferrous phosphate as a white crystalline 
magma by acting with phosphoric acid upon iron filings or turnings, and straining 
the solution. 

Mr. John Moss read a lengthy and very interesting paper on the structure and 
development of Pareira stem, which cannot well be abstracted. It is printed with 
two wood-cuts in the London " Pharmaceutical Journal," March 4, pp. 702 — 707. 

Mr. W. A. H. Naylor read a paper on Cosmolin, referring therein to the investi- 
gations of Dr. A. W. Miller, apparently without being aware of the later experi- 
ments ("Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1875, P« 2 57)- Mr. Naylor's object being to deter- 
mine its composition, he found it to consist of hydrocarbons with a little (-69 per 
cent.) moisture, and traces ("04 per cent.) of ash. By dissolving it in warm ether 
and collecting the portions separating on exposing the solution to different degrees 
of low temperature, he obtained fractions melting between the extremes of 16*5 and 
53'5° C. Similar results were obtained with each of the two portions of cosmolin, 
soluble and insoluble in boiling alcohol. By fractional distillation, portions having 
different melting points were likewise obtained. The author concludes from his 
experiments that cosmolin is a mixture of paraffins. 

At the last meeting of the session, held April 5th, Mr. T. H. Hill presiding, 
Professor Attfield called attention to a sample of foreign crystallized glycerin. To 
obtain it, it appeared to be necessary that the glycerin should be perfectly pure, 
fairly cold, and subjected to considerable vibration. The crystals, it was said, could 
be used for purifying slightly impure glycerin, in which they would grow, leaving 
the impurities in the mother liquor. 

Mr. E. M. Holmes stated that the leaves and flowers sent, under the name of 
Garrya elliptica, by Prof. Maisch (see "Amer. Jour. Phar.,"i 875, p. 279), appeared 
to belong rather to Garrya Fremontii, in having the leaves smooth underneath and 
not undulated. A living specimen of G. elliptica was exhibited for comparison. 

A paper by T. H. Powell and J. Bayne was read, in which experiments were 
detailed, made for the purpose of ascertaining the nature of the product obtained 
by the action of hydrocyanic acid upon calomel. After giving the observations of 
Scheele, Regimbeau, Soubeiran and others upon the black powder formed by the 
two compounds, the authors ascertained that the presence of free hydrochloric acid 
prevents the dark coloration. On adding hydrocyanic acid to calomel, a liquid 
results which contains free hydrocyanic and hydrochloric acids and mercuric chlo- 
ride and cyanide 5 if the remaining powder be repeatedly acted upon by fresh portions 
of hydrocyanic acid, a black powder remains, which becomes grey on drying, and 

Am 'M°ay r ;i876 a . rm '} Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations 235 

which is probably metallic mercury. Prof. Attfleld did not agree with this conclu- 
sion ; metallic mercury was obtained by sublimation, but that the residue was noth- 
ing but metallic mercury had not been proven. He hoped that the authors would 
continue their researches 

Mr. W. Willmott read a paper on Linimentum Saponis, Br. P., <with special refer- 
ence to its employment in hospital practice, in which the directions contained in the 
various editions of the London and British "Pharmacopoeias" are discussed, and 
compared with the formulas in use by five of the London hospitals; the author sug- 
gests the following modification of the formula: 16 oz. of soft soap (free from caus- 
tic potash), 8 oz of camphor, and 2 fl. oz. of oil of rosemary are mixed with 5 pints 
(100 fl. oz.) of rectified spirit (spec, grav., o'838), the mixture is occasionally stirred 
during twenty-four hours, strained or filtered, and mixed with 3 pints (60 fl. oz.) of 
distilled water. The spirit rapidly disintegrates the soap, and dissolves the neutral 
portion only, leaving behind the irritating alkaline matter, which is soluble in water. 
The liniment remains clear and free from sediment at all temperatures. 

In the discussion which followed, the speakers expressed themselves against the 
substitution of soft for the hard soap ordered by the " Pharmacopoeia." The excess 
of soap used in the British " Pharmacopoeia " process could be utilized by pressing 
it in a mould, and using it for washing. 

Pharmaceutical Society of Paris. — Mr. Coulier presided at the meeting held 
February 2d, at which Mr. Planchon gave an account of the recent researches on 
the various transformations of the larvae of cantharides. 

Mr. Legrip read a note on Dietheralysis, 1 which is the name given by him to a 
new method for extracting vegetable juices ; it consists in mechanically dividing the 
fresh plants or their parts, collected during the period of their greatest activity, and 
then subject them, in a suitable apparatus, to the direct action of the ether. Two 
layers of liquid are formed, the upper green one being a solution of chlorophyll and 
fat in ether, the lower aqueous layer being thick and brown, and containing all the 
proximate principles, dissolved or not, which have been expulsed from the cells with 
the vegetable fluids under the pressure of the ether. Even odorous juices retain, 
under the ether, their peculiar perfume. 

The facts stated can be readily demonstrated by making a number of perforations 
in a test-tube, enclosing in it a fresh leaf and suspending the tube in a larger vessel 
containing ether, and closing the latter hermetically. The ether will soon begin to 
assume a green color, and the juice to separate in minute brownish drops, and the 
leaf will finally be left completely decolorized. It is evident that the constituents 
will by this process be obtained in their natural condition, without any alteration. 

Mr. Limousin observed that ether would dissolve many proximate principles ; but 
Mr. Legrip regards the action of the ether to be mechanical rather than solvent. 

Mr. Limousin called attention to an observation made by A. Duhomme, accord- 
ing to which a hydrometer does not indicate for a time the correct density of the 
liquid, if this should run over either during or after the immersion of the instrument. 

1 From Sia, through, by means of; niQup, ether; xw«f/ f , separation, or h6a>, to dis- 
charge, loosen. 

236 Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations, { hm £?J£™' 

The phenomenon was explained by Mr. Coulier to be due to the superficial tension 
of liquids, which has been studied by Mr. Plateau. 

A paper on Dragon s blood and its falsifications, by Mr. Henry Bretet, was read. 
True dragon's blood is not scratched by the finger-nail, yields a red, non-adherent 
powder, when heated gives of red vapors, and is found to contain very little iron. 
False dragon's blood, which appears to be made by mixing oxide of iron with resin, 
differs in each of these particulars, but sometimes imparts a purple-red color to alco- 
hol, proving that some true dragon's blood had been used in manufacturing the 

Mr. Guichard made some remarks on fluid and syrupy extracts, and noticed more 
particularly the fluid extracts officinal in England and the United States. For con- 
venience in dispensing, he has used for some time preparations which, while repre- 
senting solutions of solid extracts, are prepared by concentrating infusions of the 
drug to a certain extent, adding some glycerin, and evaporating until the residue 
represents approximately a solution of one part of extract in an equal weight of 
glycerin. The author prefers this method to the solution of the solid extract in 
glycerin or other solvents, and regards the addition of some glycerin, even to ordi- 
nary extracts, to be advantageous. Mr. Desnoix coincided with these views, but 
Mr. Mialhe considered the addition of glycerin unnecessary. 

Mr. Petit gave a summary of his researches of the action of pancreatin upon albu- 
minoid substances, whereby crystallizable compounds, leucin and tyrosin, analogous 
to the products of excretion, are formed. The residue from the action of pepsin 
upon albuminoids is always amorphous. 

At the meeting held March ist, a note by Mr. Frebault, of Meursalt, was read, 
on the use of alkaline picramates as a test for acids and alkalies. The picramates 
(dinitramidophenates) of the alkalies and of calcium have a magnificent red color, 
which by free acid is changed to greenish-yellow, the red being restored by an alkali. 
A solution of the ammonium salt is readily obtained by acting with an excess of 
sulphhydrate of ammonium upon an alcoholic solution of picric (trinitrophenic) 
acid. The calcium picramates keep very well, and may be employed in solution or 
with paper like litmus. 

Another paper, by the same author, was on The action of iodine upon carminic acid 
and the coloring principle of logwood. An infusion of cochineal with distilled water 
is not affected, but on the addition of a little alkali, or by using ordinary water, is 
instantly decolorized. The same reaction takes place with an infusion of logwood. 
Free acids prevent the reaction ; the most convenient reagent is a solution of iodine 
in potassium iodide. The author believes this reaction to be available for the rapid 
valuation of cochineal, carmine and logwood, and for the estimation of iodine. 
Fuchsin and the coloring principles of red poppy, mulberries and wine are not 

A discussion ensued on the yield of extracts, Mr. Hoffmann believing that notable 
differences in the yield from the same material were not obtained, provided the pro- 
cess was not changed. Mr. Guichard, however, cited the experience of several 
authors, proving the variability of the yield. 

To detect the presence of fuchsin in moine, Mr. Yvon recommended to treat the 
suspected wine with animal charcoal, which retains the fuchsin, and from which it 
may be afterwards obtained by the aid of alcohol. 

Am. Jour. Ph. arm 
May, 1876 




The International Exposition at Philadelphia will have been opened (May 
loth) by the time the present number reaches some of our readers, who are un- 
doubtedly to some extent familiar with the extent which it promises to assume. 
That there will be much of interest to the pharmacist to see and a great deal to 
learn, may be expected. Many new and old remedial agents, which are but partial- 
ly or not at all known in this country, many new or improved apparatus and de- 
vices bearing upon the drug business, will doubtless be found among the multitude 
of articles which have been collected in FaJrmount Park from all sections of the 
globe. While it can scarcely be expected that everything 1 elated to pharmacy, 
more especially all the numerous chemical and pharmaceutical preparations and 
appliances should be of sufficient importance to claim the same attention, yet much 
will be noticed possessing lasting intrinsic value. While our readers will not look 
for minute descriptions of all the features of this Exposition, it will be our aim to 
select from that which will be presented such matters for more detailed considera- 
tion which may appear to be more especially adapted to the wants, or serve for com- 
parison with the products of the American pharmacist. 

In this connection, we desire to direct the notice of our readers to the arrange- 
ments made by the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, for the convenience of those 
visitors more or less directly connected with the drug trade. The Actuary is now 
daily present at the College building, and prepared to give information and assist 
strangers in their endeavors to most profitably spend the time which may be at their 
disposal on the occasion of their visit. The pharmacists, druggists and chemists, 
from whatever par-t of the globe they may hail, will be welcome. 

The Philadelphia Drug Exchange, we are informed, are likewise prepared to 
show similar civilities to druggists, so that no one visiting during the Exposition 
need feel embarrassed for want of advice to further his object. 

The Twenty-fourth Annual Meeting of the American Pharmaceuti- 
cal Association will be held in Philadelphia, September 12th, and many mem- 
bers will postpone their trip to the International Exposition until that time, when 
they may expect to see what may be new and interesting in the pharmaceutical and 
chemical line, in connection with others who are interested in the same pursuit. An 
interchange of ideas may thus be had, for which rarely any better opportunity will 
be afforded. The Committees of Arrangements, appointed by the National Asso- 
ciation and the Philadelphia College, are actively at work, and we understand that 
it will be among their main endeavors to so arrange matters as to afford every attend- 
ing member the best opportunities of examining minutely and profitably such goods 
in which, as pharmacist or druggist, he may expect to be most deeply interested, with- 
out, in his search after all the novelties, being compelled to neglect the sessions of 
the Association. The ladies who may accompany the members will also be well 
cared for by the ladies of this city. 

Reviews, etc. 

f Am. Jour. Pharm 
\ May, 1876 

The present year of" the Centennial independence of the United States is also of 
special interest to the pharmacists of this country. Five years ago, the Philadelphia 
College of Pharmacy celebrated the semi-centennial anniversary of its foundation ; 
three years hence, the New York College will have attained its fiftieth year since its 
organization 5 35 years have passed by since the Maryland College ' obtained its 
charter, and 20 years since it was reorganized, and on the 15th of October next it 
will be twenty-five years since, in New York, the first Conventionof Pharmacists 
and Druggists met, which took the initiatory steps to organize the American 
Pharmaceutical Association. 


Proceedings of the Vermont Pharmaceutical Association, at the sixth annual meet- 
ing, held at St. Johnsbury, October 13th and 14th, 1875. Rutland: 1876, 8vo. 
pp. 40. 

On page 570, of our last volume, will be found a brief account of this meeting ; 
the pamphlet before us contains the various reports in full. Of particular interest 
to us is the report on legislation, which gives the draft of a plain pharmacy bill, in 
which, with the least possible complication, sufficient competency of the pharma- 
cists, and their assistants, is aimed at. The bill passed the House by more than a 
two-thirds vote, but failed in the Senate through the treachery, as the committee 
tell us, of the Senator from Burlington, a patent medicine dealer, who promised to 
" take care of the bill," and labored faithfully to defeat it. Our friends deserve 
better luck next time. 

Two papers, on displacement apparatus and on fluid extracts, have been published 
in the pamphlet 5 the latter speaks of the faulty officinal formulas for various of the 
kinds, but unfortunately omits to point out either the faults or remedies therefor. 
The process recommended in the paper is the same as that patented by Mr. Spencer 
Thomas, in 1865 ("Am. Journ. Pharm.," 1865, p. 85, 1866, p. 218, containing 
also Prof. Procter's comments). 

We regret to learn that all the books, records, papers, &c, of this association 
were consumed by fire, February 16th, which totally destroyed the Secretary's, Mr 
A. W. Higgins', store. 

Formula for non-officinal preparations in general use in the District of Columbia. — 
Published by E. L. Duvall. Washington : 1875, 8vo. PP« 4^- 

As this formulary has been prepared by a joint committee of the Medical Society 
of the District of Columbia and the National College of Pharmacy, an authority 
is attached to it, at least for the district in which the national capital is situated. 
Speaking of it as a whole, we are much impressed with the practicability of the 
formulas framed ; but we regret that the joint committee did not see fit to adhere 
more closely to the formulas for elixirs adopted by the Amer. Phar. Asso. The 
name of elixir aurantii is very appropriate for the simple elixir, and the absence of 
the slight amount of cinnamon is immaterial. We object, however, to such names 

%T-\ Reviews, etc. 239 

as elixir calisayae, when the preparation is made with the sulphates of the four 
commoner cinchona alkaloids, and calisaya bark is not used. The deviation, in 
strength, of some formulas from those of the Amer. Phar. Asso., of 1875, is ex- 
plained by the former having been adopted as early as last August. 

Liquor ergotse should have been called tinctura ergotse, being made from ergot, 
with alcohol of about 30 per cent. Syrupus calcii lactophosphatis is directed to be 
made with lactophosphate of calcium, but a formula for the latter is not given. 
For making syr. ferri oxidi the saccharated oxide of iron of the German Pharma- 
copoeia is used, without giving a formula for its preparation. If it was intended to 
refer the apothecary to that pharmacopoeia, then formulas for compound liquorice 
powder and breast tea were likewise unnecessary. 

We shall endeavor to make room, in our next issue, for some of the formulas 
which have not heretofore been published in the " Journal " 

Filth diseases and their prevention. By John Simon, M.D., F. R. C. S. Boston: Jas. 
Campbell, 1876, i2mo, pp. 96. 

The author of this masterly essay, being Chief Medical Officer of the Privy 
Council and of the Local Government Board of England, has had unusual facili- 
ties to familiarize himself with the subject, and gives many practical suggestions for 
the prevention of typhoid fever and allied diseases, the origin of ' which may be 
traced to the accumulation of filth. Properly regulated sanitary work being, here, 
still in its infancy, the Massachusetts State Board of Health have done well to 
republish this essay and to recommend its being read, and the suggestions heeded 
by every intelligent person. 

Lecciones de Botanica arregladas segun los principios admitidos por Guibourt, 
Richard, Duchartre, De Candolle y otros. Por Joaquin y Juan Donde (padre e 
hijo), farmaceuticos titulados, quimicos y naturalistos. Merida de Yucatan : 1876, 
i2mo, pp. 259. 

Lessons in botany. 

Without pretending to be familiar with the literature of Yucatan, we should 
regard the volume before us as a valuable addition to other available works, on 
account of its simple and systematic arrangement and the general correctness and 
conciseness of the manner in which the researches in morphological, physiological, 
pathological and systematic botany have been treated. To our readers it will be 
of interest to learn that one of the authors, of whom we brought a biographical 
sketch on page 96, of this volume, was formerly a contributor to the " Journal." 

Bulletin of the Bussey Institution (Jamaica Plain, Boston), part v. Cambridge : Press 
of John Wilson & Son, 1876, 8vo, pp. 100. 

Of the eight papers contained in this part, three are from the pen of Prof. F. H. 
Storer, viz : Composition of date-stone and of the stones of peaches and prunes, 
analyses of potassic fertilizers and occurrence of ammonia in anthracite ; four 
papers on the disease of olive and orange trees in California, on grape-vine mildew, 
on the black knot and a list of fungi near Boston, by Prof. W. G. Farlow, and a 


Reviews, etc. 

' Am. Jour Pharm. 
\ May, 1876. 

report on the Arnold arboretum by the Director, C. S. Sargent. Six well-executed 
lithographs accompany this pamphlet, which concludes the first volume of the 

Report of the Board of Administrators of the Charity Hospital to the General Assembly 
of Louisiana, session of 1875. New Orleans: 8vo, pp. 105. 

Besides the special reports and statistical tables, which may be looked for in such 
a publication, we find a historical sketch of this institution, by James Burns, M.D., 
which goes back to the times of Louis XIV and of the foundation of the colony, 
but, as may be expected, enters more into the details of the operations during the 
years last past. 

The reception, from the authors, of the following reprints is hereby acknowl- 
edged : 

Studies upon essential oils. By G. Dragendorff. 

Structure and developement of Pareira stem, Chondodendron tomentosum R. et. P. By 
John Moss. 

Vaseline. By John Moss. 

On further researches on the dissociation of Molecules in solution. By Chas. R. (J. 

The Opium habit and " Opium-mania cures." By Stanford E. Chaille, A. M., 
M.D., &c. 

This last pamphlet exposes the criminal doings of a doctor, with whose practices 
the readers of the "Journal" have already become acquainted, on page 464, 
volume for 1873. The Ext. Picus porteana appears to have been changed now into 
an " opiumania cure," and the composition was most likely changed also, since 
Mr. J. Johnson reports it to contain " a good deal of substance in solution " and 
found only about five grains of opium in half a fluidounce, whereas Prof. Wayne 
obtained 4.-4. grains of morphia in the same quantity. 


Zadoc Douglass Gilman died in the city of Washington, D. C, March 15th, 
in the 60th year of his age, after a brief illness. He was a native of Alexandria, 
Va., but removed with his parents to Washington, where, after having received a 
good education, he entered the drug business with Mr. Seth Todd, remaining with 
his employer as assistant. After the death of the latter, Mr. Gilman purchased the 
store and business, which he conducted until his demise. He was one of the first 
members of the various local societies organized in the National capital for the pro- 
motion and advancement of pharmacy, and liberally contributed to their support. 
Energetic, yet amiable and courteous in conducting his business, he was devoted to 
his family, and an active and useful member in the various public organizations 
in which he interested himself. Within less than two years, the National College 
of Pharmacy has lost in him by death, the third member of its first Board of Trus- 



JUNE, 1876. 



Assistant Professor of Botany in the University of Michigan. 

The writer proposes, in this and, perhaps, several succeeding arti- 
cles, to point out to pharmacists the utility of the microscope as a 
means of identifying powdered drugs, and of ascertaining their purity. 
He does this because he is convinced that, notwithstanding the writings 
of Hassall, Pocklington, Fliickiger, Planchon and some others, the 
practical usefulness and ready availability of the microscope as a means 
of organic analysis, is not fully appreciated. 

This instrument is especially useful in the examination of organic 
bodies. One would expect that when two parts of plants differ in 
external appearance, corresponding differences would exist in the 
minute structure as well, and such is found to be the case. It is not 
too much to say that, for those having the necessary previous 
knowledge, it is no harder to distinguish two powders under the micro- 
scope than it is to distinguish the two bodies from which the powders 
are derived. There is no more difficulty in telling ground mustard 
from ground horse-radish, and, where they are mixed, in picking the 
one out from the other, than there is in telling the mustard-seed and 
the horse-radish-root. Wherever any powdered drug has traces of 
organic structure, the microscope can identify them and ascertain their 
source. In these cases the use of the microscope can properly accom- 
pany the work of chemical analysis. It can precede and indicate what 
the chemist is to look for, or it can follow and verify the results of 
his work. In some cases, indeed, microscopical analysis can do 
successful labor in fields where chemistry is powerless. Chemistry, 
for instance, cannot distinguish between the various starches — wheat- 
starch, corn, potato, arrow root, sago starch, etc.; it can only show 


242 Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. \ Am j^J 7 ^ rm ' 

that amylaceous matter is present. The microscope, on the other 
hand, can easily distinguish between them. 

One great advantage in the use of the microscope is the readiness 
with which results can be obtained from it. But a moment is needed 
by the skilled microscopist to distinguish the various starches, or to 
analyze the various proprietary flours, prepared foods, farinas, etc. ; 
and even such complicated mixtures as the tooth-powders can be 
unraveled in a short time. The chemist would have to spend much 
time over the latter, if, indeed, he could succeed in performing it 
at all. 

For the work contemplated in these papers a complicated and costly 
instrument, with all the modern expensive appliances, is not required; 
an inexpensive microscope, with a magnifying power of 200 or 300 
diameters, is sufficient. One of the cheaper compound microscopes, 
with an inch objective, can be made to answer, a half inch or a 
quarter inch objective should be added as soon as practicable, as it 
will be sometimes needed. They can be obtained of any reputable 
maker or dealer at prices varying from $25.00 to $150.00, depending 
on the character of the workmanship and number of objectives and 

Instructions concerning the use of the microscope must be looked 
for in books devoted to that subject. With cleanliness, care and 
some patience any one can use the instrument successfully. When 
the tissue of a drug is to be examined, it should be softened by soaking 
in water, or some other fluid, and then as thin sections as possible be 
taken in several directions. The sections can be transferred to a 
glass slip by means of a camel's hair brush. They should be deposited 
in a drop of water and covered by thin glass when they are ready for 
examination. If greater transparency is required, the sections can be 
placed in glycerin ; still greater transparency can be obtained by placing 
dry sections in Canada balsam. If a powder is to be examined, a 
very small part of it should be placed on the glass-slip in water, 
glycerin or Canada balsam. 


The starches form powders of a simple nature, with which the 
unpractised observer will do well to begin. They vary very much 
in form, size and structure, and to some extent in chemical charac- 

Am jine"' I 8 7 h 6 arm *} Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. 243 

The color of starch is usually pure white. In some cases a tinge of 
blue can also be seen, as in some wheat-starch, while the starch from 
the potato has a slightly yellowish cast. The fineness of the starch 
powder depends on the size of the individual grains, except where the 
grains are artificially agglomerated, as in sago and tapioca ; the former 
is in small, round, brownish grains, while tapioca is in larger, irregular, 
white fragments. The individual starch grains vary much in size, 
though they are pretty constant for any given species. The various 
sizes will be described in the special descriptions to follow ; here it is 
sufficient to say that oat, rice and rye starches represent the smallest 
grains, while those of corn starch are not much larger. The medium 
size is found in the grains of wheat and arrow-root starch. The 
largest grains are found in potato and canna starch. In the last two 
the unaided eye can distinguish the largest individual grains, but in 
nearly all others they can be seen only under the microscope. The 
specific gravity is more than that of water, though it varies much with 
the state of dryness of the starch. Its average is given, by Wiesner, 
at 1*5. It, however, varies with the different species of starch. The 
grains contain considerable water — as high as 30 per cent, when fresh, 
reduced sometimes to 7 per cent., when air dry. 

The grains, when exposed under the microscope to hot water 
(140 F. or above) swell, then burst, and finally form a homogeneous 
paste. The same process occurs, and can be easily observed, micro- 
scopically, when they are tested with dilute alkalies or mineral acids. 
They are insoluble in cold water, alcohol and ether. The grains turn 
blue when brought in contact with a solution of iodine, a simple solu- 
tion of iodine in water is sufficient for this very delicate test. This is 
a very satisfactory test for microscopical use, as it will betray at once 
the smallest proportion of starch in the tissue under examination. The 
iodine solution can be applied in this way : the tissue or powder to be 
examined is placed on the glass slide in a drop of water, and a thin 
glass cover is placed over it ; it is then placed under the microscope 
and focussed, the stage of the microscope being tilted a little, if prac- 
ticable ; a drop of the iodine solution is then placed on the slide, at the 
upper edge of the cover. It will gradually spread in the water and 
through the tissue examined ; meantime the eye at the microscope 
watches the changes it causes. Should it not draw through readily, 
a bit of blotting paper, placed at the opposite edge of the glass cover, 


Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. 

Am. Jour. Pharm, 
June, 1876. 

will take up the water, and the iodine solution will come in to take its 
place. The color of the starch grains affected by iodine, although 
usually blue, may vary, according to the amount of the iodine, from a 
light violet, through blue, to blue-black. 

Under the micros- 
cope the starch-grains 
present the form of 
minute grains, of a 
form and structure 
characteristic for each 
species. They are us- 
ually bounded bycurved 
surfaces, — spherical, 
elliptical, egg - shaped^ 
lens-shaped, etc., but 
sometimes they have 
flat surfaces as well. 
They usually contain 
a dark spot, line or 
cross within, which is 
sometimes central, 
sometimes eccentric. 
This spot is called the 
nucleus and is usually small and round in starch found in fresh tissues^ 
slit or cross-shaped in grains which have been dried (Fig. i). 1 

The position and character of the nucleus affords a valuable means 
of describing the grains. The grains, also, frequently show a series 
of rather faint lines concentric about the nucleus. When present,, 
they sometimes can be distinguished only with careful focussing and 
close examination, and in many starches they are entirely absent. 
Sometimes the grains have more than one nucleus (Fig. 1, a) in which 
case they are said to be compouud. The compound grains may con- 
sist of only two simple ones, as in tapioca, or three, as usually in 
sago, or of a great many, as in rice, oat and buckwheat. 2 

1 All the figures in these papers were drawn from nature, by Louisa M. Reed, of 
Ann Arbor, Mich., whose work is accurate and careful, as can be tested by com- 
paring it with the actual objects. 

2 For those who wish to study the microscopical characters of starch more in 


. Grains of potato starch, a and £are from a 
fresh potato, the others have been dried. 

Am jine > r "i8 7 6 arm '} Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. 245 

Having given the general characters of the starch powders, we will 
now pass on to the consideration of the species of interest to the 


This starch is not officinal, but the ease of obtaining it and the size 
of the grains make it the best and most convenient form for the 
inexperienced microscopist to begin with. Besides, it is frequently 
used and still more frequently named as an adulterant of other powders 
and is, consequently, important to the pharmacist. For examination 
fresh, it can be easily obtained from the potato, nearly the whole of the 
interior of which is made up of it. 

It forms a fine, white, glistening powder, with small, irregular, 
pulverulent masses intermixed. It crackles slightly when rubbed 
between the fingers. When examined carefully, it can be seen to have 
a yellowish cast of color. It has a slight taste like raw potato, and a 
faint acrid odor. The latter is brought out more decidedly by the 
application of alcohol or chlorhydric acid. 

The grains vary much in size, due, probably, to unequal develop- 
ment, the youngest being smallest, the greatest length attained is about 
50//. 1 The form is usually oval, egg-shaped, elliptical or round-trian- 
gular. The smallest and youngest grains are nearly spherical. The 

detail, the following references may prove useful : HassalPs Adulteration in Food 
and Medicine, Soubeiran, Dictionnaire des Falsifications; Wiesner, Rohstoffe des 
Pfianzenreiches, pp. 239-289 5 Planchon, Determination des drogues simples, Vol. II, 
chap. XIII ; Harrington, American Naturalist, April and June, 1875, v °l- PP- 
193-198, 339-346. 

For the examination of starch, Thomas Greenish recommends especially the 
following : 

" Saturate distilled water with creosote, and take of 
the filtered solution, %v 
Spirit of wine, ..... giss 
Glycerin, . . . . . 3i ss -" 

The starch could, probably, be preserved, in this solution, as a permanent micro- 
scopical specimen. 

1 tf=ten-thousandths of an inch. For information as to methods of measure- 
ment, the works on microscopy must be consulted. Where the pharmacist has not 
access to them, the measurements given will be useful to him by indicating the rela- 
tive size of the bodies measured. The writer uses the small unit tt. so that fractions 
can be avoided, and the comparison of length can be made readily, without reduc- 
tion. Fractions of inch are used because they are much more generally used and 
understood in this country than millimeters. 

246 Analysis of Cine ho- Quinine. 

nucleus is near the smaller end. The distance from it to the smaller 
end is usually \ to \ of that to the larger end. The grains are almost 
invariably simple, but occasionally one with two nuclei is found (Fig. 
I, a\ and very rarely one with three nuclei. 

Potato-starch is much used in the arts for making a stiffening paste, 
and for other purposes. It is said to be sometimes surreptitiously 
replaced by poor grades of wheat- starch (Wiesner). It is also some- 
times mixed with ground fibre (probably woodv), and is adulterated with 
earthy matter (Soubeiran). Its use as an adulterant of arrow-root and 
other starches and drugs has already been mentioned. 

In the next number, the most important of the other pharmacat 
starches will be described and figured. 



[Abstract from an Inaugural Essay.) 

Several years ago, a preparation called Cincho-Quinine was thrown 
upon the market, which is represented as having all the constituents of 
cinchona-bark in their alkaloidal condition, and as being fully equal to 
sulphate of quinia in therapeutical effect, when given in the same dose. 
By diligent and profuse advertising, and being sold at a lower price than 
sulphate of quinia, it has, in many localities, gained considerable favor, 
and is frequently prescribed by some practitioners as a substitute for 
sulphate of quinia, solely upon the testimonials in the circulars, which 
accompany each bottle, and from w T hich it appears that many have 
used this nostrum with success. 

This nostrum was analyzed in 1870 by Wm. T. Wenzell, in 1874 by 
Albert E. Ebert, in 1875 by Profs. Scheffer and Diehl, and in 1875 
by Profs. S. P. Sharpies, F. A. Genth and others. Neither Wenzell 
nor Ebert were successful in determining the presence of quinia, Profs. 
Scheffer and Diehl found quinia, quinidia, and probably cinchonidia 
("Amer. Journ. Pharm.," April, 1875) in very small quantities. The 
other analysts succeeded in determining the presence of quinia, qui- 
nidia and cinchonidia, besides cinchonia (" Drug. Cir.," April, 1875, p. 
85) ; but the amount of each is not stated, which in justice to the pub- 
lic at large should have been done. 

What is cincho-quinine ? Does it really contain quinia, and how 

Ari jJne ) r i8 P 7 6! irm " \ Analysis of Cine ho- Quinine. 247 

much ? are questions which have often been put to me by both phy- 
sicians and customers. I could not give the desired information, and 
have therefore determined to subject this nostrum to a chemical analysis. 

I used for my experiments two samples of cincho quinine, which I 
shall designate as " new " and " old." The new sample had been ob- 
tained from the manufacturers through Powers & Weightman, from 
whom I purchased it in December, 1875. The old sample I procured 
through Prof. J. M. Maisch, from Mr. J. L. Lemberger, of Lebanon, 
Pa., who obtained it from a New York agency July 1 8th, 1873. The 
experiments were made in the laboratory of the Philadelphia College of 
Pharmacy, under the supervision of Prof. Maisch. 

The qualitative examination of cincho-quinine was conducted in the 
same manner as detailed by Profs. SchefFer and Diehl in the paper re- 
ferred to above, and gave the same results, proving the presence of 
ammonium sulphate, cinchonia sulphate and cinchona alkaloids, also a 
small quantity of organic matter, which could not be dissolved in alco- 
hol, but remained behind with the ammonium sulphate, and with it 
was soluble in water. 

To determine the amount of the various constituents of this nos- 
trum, De Vrij's method for separating the cinchona alkaloids was first 
tried ; but it soon became apparent that this method would not yield 
correct results, in consequence of the great excess of cinchonia pres- 
ent. Mixtures of the alkaloid, in approximately the same proportion 
as they exist in this preparation, according to the published essays, 
were made ; and, after trying several modifications, the following pro- 
cess was found to yield satisfactory results, and was therefore used in 
assaying both samples of cincho-quinine : 

Six grams of the mixed cinchona alkaloids were dissolved in dilute 
hydrochloric acid, the solution precipitated by ammonia, the precipitate 
washed upon a filter with cold water, and then dried. The washings 
were evaporated to dryness, and the residue treated with ether ; after 
evaporating the latter, a small quantity of alkaloid was left behind 
which was added to the larger portion, giving the total amount of al- 
kaloids present, the loss from the original weight taken indicating non- 
alkaloidal compounds. The saline matter insoluble in ether was dis- 
solved in water, in which it was readily soluble, and the sulphuric* acid 
present determined in the usual manner by precipitating with chloride 
of barium. About one-half the dried alkaloids was then rubbed to a 

2 4 8 

Analysis of Cine ho- Quinine, 

( Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ June, 1876. 

fine powder — the other portion being reserved for verifying the results 
obtained — and macerated for thirty hours with sufficient ether to cover 
it, afterwards transferred to a filter, and washed with ether until at least 
four fluidounces of filtrate were obtained, which were evaporated in a 
beaker, the result indicating the total amount of alkaloids soluble in the 
quantity of ether employed. On treating this residue with 76 times its 
weight of ether, a residue was left, which, after dissolving in water by the 
aid of sulphuric acid, was not afFected by chlorine water and ammonia, 
proving the complete absence of quinia and quinidia, nor could a pre- 
cipitate be obtained on the addition of a concentrated solution of pure 
Rochelle salt and setting aside for two days ; cinchonidia was there- 
fore likewise absent, and the undissolved portion was cinchonia. 

The etherial solution was again evaporated to dryness and the resi- 
due weighed, afterwards treated with 40 times its weight of water and 
sufficient sulphuric acid to obtain a solution, which was carefully neu- 
tralized by ammonia. 

With the old cincho-quinine a perfect solution was obtained, but 
the new cincho quinine left some greenish resinous globules behind, 
which would likewise not dissolve in boiling acidulated water. The 
filtered solution of the sulphate was treated with tartrate of sodium and 
potassium, and the precipitated tartrate of cinchonidia collected after two 
days, washed and dried ; one part of this tartrate representing '804 
part of cinchonidia, the actual amount of this alkaloid present, is easily 

The filtrate and washings from this precipitate were concentrated 
to the original measure and mixed with strong solution of potassium 
iodide in excess. On the following day, the precipitated hydriodate of 
quinidia was collected, washed and dried, and its weight multiplied with 
0*718, to ascertain the total amount of this alkaloid. 

The filtrate from the foregoing precipitate contained all the quinia. 
To avoid the solvent action of the chemicals previously added, upon 
the herapathite, it was determined not to estimate the quinia in this 
form, but to weigh it as pure alkaloid. Accordingly, the liquid was 
evaporated and the dry mass treated with ether, on evaporating the 
ether, iodide of ammonium was found in the residue. It was therefore 
dissolved in water, boiled with sufficient sulphuric acid to eliminate all 
hydriodic acid, precipitated by ammonia, and repeatedly agitated with 
fresh portions of ether, which, on evaporation, left pure quinia. 

The amount of moisture contained in cincho-quinine was ascer- 

Am jine ) r 'i 7 6 arm '} Analysis of Cine ho- Quinine. 249 

tained by drying a weighed sample at about 150 F., and the ammo- 
nium by treating another portion of cincho-quinine with boiling alcohol, 
and weighing the undissolved portion as ammonium sulphate. 

The results of these assays, calculated for 100 parts of material, 
were as follows : 

New sample. Old sample. 

Sulphuric acid (S0 3 ), 6 516 5-016 

Ammonium (NHJ, 1-360 1-380 

Water, determined by heat, 4*098 3' 1 74 

Loss (mainly water of crystallization), o"359 0*040 

Total non-alkaloid matter, I2 '333 9-610 

Quinia, 0*466 0-240 

Quinidia, 1-250 1-820 

Cinchonidia, 0717 0920 

Resin and loss, 0*583 

Cinchonia, i'384 2*440 

Total am't dissolved by ist treatment with ether, 4*400 5'4 2 ° 
Cinchonia left undissolved on ist treatm't with ether, 83*267 84*970 

The total amount of cinchonia, a portion of which is combined with 
sulphuric acid, was therefore 84*651 per cent, in the new, and 87*410 
per cent, in the old sample, while the quinia was present in one case 
to the amount only of less than one-half, and in one sample less than 
one-quarter of 1 per cent. 

Remarks by the Editor. — It will be of interest to recapitulate, 
in connection with the above essay, the quantitative results obtained in 
previous analyses, more particularly the amount of the three higher 
priced alkaloids, present in cincho-quinine, which form the correct 
basis for estimating its commercial as well as medicinal value. Wenzell 
obtained 2*5 per cent, Scheffer and Diehl (see "Amer. Jour. Phar.," 
1875, p. 205), from four samples, 3*00, 3*25, 2*15 and 3*10 per cent., 
and Wells (4*400 — 1*384=) 3*016 and (5*420 — 2*440=) 2*980 per 
cent. ; the average of these seven assays gives 2*86 per cent, of higher 
priced cinchona alkaloids, from which figure the lowest amount on 
record differs by '71 or 25 per cent., and the highest amount recorded 
by *39 or nearly 14 per cent., while the proportion of the lowest to the 
highest figure, 2*15 and 3*25, is as 2 : 3. 

A still greater variation is observable in the percentage of quinia, 
small as it is ; the lowest one found (Wells) being '24, and the high- 


Analysis of Fluid Extracts, 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 

June, 1876. 

est (Scheffer and Diehl) -612 per cent., their proportion is nearly as 2 : 5, 
Mr. Wells has estimated the amount of ammonium from which the 
ammonium sulphate in the two samples proves to be 5*44 and 5*52 
per cent., representing respectively 3*40 and 3*45 of the sulphuric acid, 
which, deducted from the assayed amounts of the latter, leave 3*116 
and 1*566 per cent, of SO s in combination with alkaloids. Allowing 
this to be combined with cinchonia, we find the following percentage 
of cinchonia sulphate (which contains io*66 per cent. SO s ) in Wells' 
old sample 14*69, and in his new sample 29*23 per cent., or, within a 
slight fraction, double the amount. The amount of alkaloidal sul- 
phate, approximately estimated by Scheffer and Diehl by treatment 
with cold water, varied in four samples between 1 1 '75 and 22 per cent. ; 
a variation nearly as great as found by Mr. Wells. 

If the figures, as obtained by the different analysts, are averaged for 
the various compounds actually contained in cincho quinine, and the 
ammonium sulphate be entirely omitted, a preparation closely resembling 
the average composition of the article in question, may be obtained by 
intimately mixing 

Quinia, alkaloid, 5 grains, or Quinia sulphate, 7*5 grains 

Quinidia, alkaloid, 15 grains, Quinidia sulphate, 20* grains 

Cinchonidia, alkaloid, 10 grains, Cinchonidia sulphate, 12.5 grains 

Cinchonia, alkaloid, 770 grains, Cinchonia sulphate, 180' grains 

Cinchonia sulphate, ■ 200 grains, Cinchonia, alkaloid, 780* grains 

1,000 grs. 1,000 grs. 

Those who desire a still closer representation, may incorporate with 
either of the above mixtures 54 grains of ammonium sulphate, which 
will not enhance the cost, but increase the weight of this, as some 
medical journals tell us, valuable nostrum. 



(Fr-om an Inaugural Essay, presented to the Nenv York College of Pharmacy.) 

The writer of this essay selected the fluid extracts of nux vomica, 
stramonium, belladonna, conium, hyoscyamus and veratrum viride as 
those most suitable for his purposes, and in each case obtained original 
packages from the several manufacturers for the purposes of examina- 

Am juneT'i8 7 h 6 arm * } Analysis of Fluid Extracts. 1 5 1 

The test solutions used were as recommended by Prof. DragendorfF 
and Prof. F. F. Mayer, and in every case were tested, with great care> 
with the pure alkaloids or alkaloidal salts. The test solution which 
was adopted by the essayist was that of the 1-10 normal solution as 
suggested by Prof. Mayer, but for convenience he calls it in his essay 
"normal," while that which he calls 1-10 normal is really equivalent 
to 1-100 normal, as used by Prof. Maver. The detailed experiments 
are very elaborate ; in the following a brief abstract of the manipula- 
tions is given: 

50 cc. of the fluid extract of nux vomica were evaporated to a syrupy 
consistence, acidulated with sulphuric acid, and while warm mixed 
with 50 cc. of water, then filtered to separate fatty matter and diluted 
to 100 cc. On testing this solution, it was observed that the final 
reaction with iodohydrargyrate of potassium was not sharply defined -> 
accordingly, the fluid extract was treated as before, the solution some- 
what concentrated and potassa added ; after 24 hours the crystals of 
brucia and strychnia were collected and separated by repeated washings 
with warm water. On concentrating the mother lye, a further crop 
of crystals was obtained, the remaining alkaloids being obtained by con- 
centrating the mother liquor, treating with sulphuric acid, filtering 
from resin, and again precipitating by potassa. The small amount 
of alkaloids, mainly strychnia, remaining in the mother waters was sep- 
arately estimated by the test solution. 

The fluid extract of stramonium leaves was acidulated, carefully evap- 
orated, mixed with water, filtered from resinous matter, and diluted to 
double the original measure. The solution being too dark for correct 
observations, the fluid extract was precipitated by plumbic acetate, the 
precipitate well washed, the filtrate freed from lead by hydrogen sul- 
phide, and the filtrate evaporated to three times the original bulk. 

Another method gave the same quantitative results. The alcohol 
was evaporated from the fluid extract, potassa was added, and the liquid 
repeatedly agitated with fresh portions of chloroform \ the chloroformic 
solution was evaporated in contact with acidulated water and filtered. 

The same processes were used for the fluid extracts of belladonna 
root, belladonna leaves and hyoscyamus. 

For testing the fluid extract of conium fruit it was found necessary to 
first separate resin and oil, by acidulating, evaporating, diluting with 
water and filtering. The filtrate was now concentrated, and the conia 

252 Analysis of Fluid Extracts. { Am -jL™; I 8& rm ' 

removed by repeated agitation with fresh portions of ether. In one 
case, treatment like the extract of stramonium was found necessary in 
order to obtain a liquid free from turbidity. 

Fluid extract of veratrum viride was acidulated, 1 evaporated to a 
syrupy consistence, diluted with water, and filtered. 

This table shows the number of cc. of the test solution used to pre- 
cipitate the alkaloids from 100 cc. of the various fluid extracts, the 
percentage amount of alkaloids in each sample, and the specific gravity 
of the several fluid extracts examined : 

Nux V 










Atropia. | 

Sp. Gr. 



Sp. Gr. 

E. R. Squibb, M.D 















o- 9 















1 000 






I "09 I 






7 '2 


1 029 






1 006 


O 28 




7 6-8 






1 '04 1 











Veratrum viride. 




yam a. 































I 050 









1 070 






I 057 




12 *o 



Tilden & Co 















i- 020 

i8- 4 










1 Jervia is precipitated from its aqueous solutions by free mineral acids. — Editor 
Amer. Jour. Phar. 

Tobacco Culture in Ohio. 253 



[From an Inaugural Essay.) 

The culture of tobacco, in Ohio, differs somewhat from the de- 
scription given in the United States Dispensatory, this latter applying 
to the mode of cultivating the plant in Virginia. A large amount of 
the finest tobacco found in our eastern market is from the fields of 
Ohio, hence some knowledge of its growth may be deemed inter- 

The eastern and southeastern part of the State affords the best soil 
for tobacco growing, and in these districts this product has become a 
staple article, affording the main crop of the farmer, and, as a rule > 
rarely failing pecuniarily, for even in seasons when the yield is small,, 
the price of the article is proportionately large. 

In growing this much-used vegetable, the first step is the preparing 
of the ground for sowing the seed, by burning logs of wood or brush 
on the section of land chosen for tobacco beds. This is done to warm 
the soil, as well as to supply the ashes needed in nourishing the young 
plants. The burning takes place either in the fall or spring previous 
to sowing. If in the fall, the ground is slightly reburnt in the follow- 
ing spring. The time required for burning the beds, if logs of wood 
are used, is generally from two to three days. If brush be used, a 
much Jess time. The earth is then dug up and raked to a proper 
consistency. After the seeds have been deposited, the bed is thor- 
oughly tramped or walked over, in order that it may retain sufficient 
moisture. In about three weeks the young plant makes its appear- 
ance, but it remains quite small for a considerable length of time, and, 
in fact, the growth is scarcely noticeable from the time of its appear- 
ance above ground (about the first of April,) until shortly before trans- 
planting, which is generally about the latter part of June. It then 
grows with astonishing rapidity, as, when transplanted, it may have 
been but from 1 to 2 inches in height, when ready to collect (latter 
part of August) it generally measures from 3 to 6 feet, and not unfre- 
quently 10 feet in height. The transplanting of tobacco is not unfre- 
quently attended with much difficulty, dry weather being very 
detrimental to the plant, and too much moisture equally as injurious. 
In the former case, the young plants wilt and die, and in the latter 
instance, the earth becomes hardened and baked around the roots of 

Am. Jour Pharm. ^ 
Jnne, 1876. J 

2 S4 

Tobacco Culture in Ohio. 

f Am. Jour. Pharm. 
{ June, 1876. 

the vegetable, thus killing it. The ground is considered to be of the 
proper consistency for transplanting after it has been thoroughly mois- 
tened by rain. 

Tobacco is collected from the last of August until the last of Octo- 
ber, until frost, and, if planted late, this unwelcome visitor often finds 
a large crop not matured, and which is, consequently, worthless after 
the first touch of its icy breath. In collecting tobacco the first leaves 
gathered are called " bottom leaves," being from five to seven of the 
lower leaves of the plant, after which the plant is topped, thus produc- 
ing larger leaves, and causing maturity in a much quicker time. This 
topping process strengthens the plant materially, as, after its perform- 
ance, new shoots or branches will almost always spring from the axils 
of the leaves nearest to where the tops were broken off, and often 
afford leaves large enough to be gathered. The next in order are the 
middle leaves, which are collected in about two weeks after taking the 
bottom leaves ; they consist of from ten to twelve leaves from the cen- 
tral part of the plant, and are the largest as well as the most valuable 
ones of the plant. Finally, the top leaves are collected, in from three 
to four weeks after taking the middle ones, providing there is no frost 
to injure them. These are smaller than the middle leaves, and 
resemble very much those taken from the bottom part 'of the plant, 
but are much cleaner than these latter, which often become very much 
soiled from their close proximity to the soil. 

Among other points in cultivating tobacco, we mention the worming 
process, which, to most persons, is an exceedingly unpleasant task. 
The worm which is found on the plant is not very attractive in 
appearance, nor agreeable to handle. It is of a green color, and, when 
full size, measures about an inch in circumference and from two to 
three inches in length. They are very destructive, a single worm 
often consuming an entire plant in a few days, if unmolested. They 
are also found to be quite numerous, inasmuch as the tobacco has to 
be thoroughly cleaned of them several times during a season. To kill 
them, the worm is grasped with the thumb and finger by the head, 
and thrown, with considerable force, on the ground, which has the 
effect of mashing them ; when agitated, while taking them from the 
plant, they will often eject a greenish liquid from the mouth, which is 
very offensive to the sight, and reminds one somewhat of the tobacco 
chewers of a higher order. 

Am j™"i8A rm '} Tobacco Culture in Ohio. 255 

After collecting the tobacco, it is taken to the tobacco house, and 
strung upon sticks (by means of a large needle and twine), called 
" tobacco sticks." Women are employed for this work, who string 
from one hundred to one hundred and twenty-five sticks per day. It 
is then placed on the tobacco scaffold, in the open air, until wilted, 
when it is placed in the " tobacco house," where a gradual heat is ap- 
plied until it assumes a yellow color. A higher degree of heat is 
then immediately applied, for twenty-four hours, to " kill it," as the 
farmer terms it, meaning the expulsion of all moisture from the leaves. 
The doors of the house are then thrown open, and the floor often 
sprinkled with water, in order that the leaves may again become suffi- 
ciently moistened to permit manipulation. It is now rolled in bundles 
ready for market. 

The main object sought for by tobacco growers is the color, which 
is influenced by various causes, among the leading ones are the modes 
of drying and the soil upon which it was raised, as the first crop of 
tobacco on any soil is invariably the finest. The " yellow spangle " 
is considered the finest color, and, consequently, brings the highest 
price. The " light red " also stands high in the list, and is deemed 
a valuable color. There are several other colors beside the two 
named which go to make up the tobacco seen in commerce. 

Ashes. — After careful experiments with an extra fine quality of tobacco, 
furnished by an Ohio grower, the following results have been ob- 
tained, being the relative per cent, yielded by bottom, middle and top 
leaves : 

Bottom leaves 18 4, middle leaves 14*2, top leaves 14*8 per cent. 

In obtaining these results, the tobacco was dried by means of heat 
until it ceased to lose weight, one thousand grains were then weighed 
out and subjected to smothered combustion, until charred, after which 
they were completely incinerated, and the product again Weighed, 
yielding, respectively, 184, 142 and 148 grains of ashes. 

These amounts are much smaller than obtained by other experimen- 
tors, and I can only attribute the different results to the following, 
namely : The bottom leaves of tobacco invariably grow on or near 
the ground, and, tobacco being of a very glutinous nature, become 
strongly impregnated with the soil. This foreign matter adheres so 
tenaciously to the leaves that it cannot all be removed, nor can it be 
recognized with the naked eye. In view of this fact, it is but fair to 

256 Tobacco Culture in Pennsylvania. \ Am )]^;^T. m ' 

suppose that the large amount of ashes which some have obtained 
may have been due, in part, at least, to'the bottom leaves having been 
used in their experiments. 



[Abstract from an Inaugural Essay.) 

The cultivation of tobacco was not carried on to any great extent in 
Pennsylvania previous to the late civil war ; since that time it has 
increased very considerably. The author's personal acquaintance with 
the culture of this commodity is limited to Lancaster county, Pa. 

The seeds which have been collected the previous autumn are sown 
(in early spring) in cold frames. These frames consist of large oblong 
boxes, without bottoms, two or two and a half feet deep by three feet 
wide, and covered with glass. They are prepared in autumn by being 
filled with rich earth and fertilizers. In selecting a site for these 
frames, a sheltered spot having a southern exposure is preferred. They 
are additionally protected from the weather by being covered with 
straw, &c. Persons making " plant-raising " a specialty, sow as early 
as the 15th of February. After sowing, the frames are covered with 
glass alone during the day, and sheltered at night. The earth being 
kept moist, the seeds soon sprout, and the little plants appear. Addi- 
tional care must now be taken to admit the sun during the day and to 
protect from the frosts at night. Persons not desirous of having plants 
early or for sale do not take the precautions above enumerated, nor do 
they sow as early. A warm, sunny spot, having a rich soil, or one 
enriched by fertilizers, is sufficient for their purposes. When quite 
young, the plants are frequently infested by the " plant-louse," an 
insect belonging to the genus "Aphis." When the plants have attained 
the height of several inches, they are transplanted to the fields. This 
is rarely done before the 15th of May to the 1st of June. The fields 
are plowed the previous autumn, as by so doing it is thought that some 
of the insect enemies are destroyed. In the spring the soil is loosened, 
and then plowed in such a manner as to form ridges one-half to one 
foot high, at a distance of four to five feet apart. The plants are 
planted on the tops of these ridges, at a distance of two to three feet. 
A wet day is chosen, as the plants require much moisture to continue 

Am j u J neTi8 P 7 6 arm } Tobacco Culture in Pennsylvania. 257 

their growth without interruption, for at best a large percentage die, 
owing to want of sufficient care in planting or the ravages of the 
u cutworm " (different species of the genera Agrotis, Gortyna, &e.) r 
which is the principal enemy at this period of its growth. They are 
concealed in the earth during the day, and go on their errands of 
destruction at night, cutting off the plant while it is young and succu- 
lent. The only means of preventing the ravages of this enemy is to 
seek for him in his hiding-place, and when found kill him. These 
belong to the order Lepidoptera, or scale-winged insects. 

After the plants have been thoroughly rooted, one of the principal 
objects is to keep down the weeds, which grow luxuriantly in the rich 
soil. This is accomplished by hoe-harrowing and the hand hoe until 
the plant grows too large to admit the passage of a horse and harrow 
without injury to the leaves, after which the plant is strong enough to 
suppress the weeds, when it grows very rapidly, soon attains the height 
of three or four feet, and puts forth the flowering head. This is 
broken off when leaves are the object of the cultivator, but whera 
seeds are desired, the inflorescence' is left to develop. Cultivators dif- 
fer as to the proper time to top or break off the flower- head ; some pre- 
fer to top when the stem has six or eight leaves, while others think ten 
not too many. After being topped, axillary branches are put forth, 
which are popularly known as " suckers." These are broken off as 
soon and as often as they appear. The whole plant is now covered 
by a viscid, resinous substance, commonly called " gum," which ren- 
ders it very unpleasant to handle. 

About this time tobacco's greatest enemy makes its appearance, 
namely, the " tobacco-worm " [Sphinx Carolina, Linn., different spe- 
cies of genus Macrosilla and others). This, the larva of the "grey 
American hawk moth," is a green worm, sometimes as large as a man's 
finger. Allied to this is the Sphinx quinquemacu/ata, of Stevens (also 
referred to Macrosilla), the larva of which sometimes infests tobacco, 
but more frequently the tomato and potato. These moths hide them- 
selves and sleep during the day, and at night they go forth to deposit 
their eggs, in patches of six or more, on the leaves. During the early 
hours of summer evenings they may be seen hovering over the flowers 
of the " Jamestown weed " {Datura stramonium), from which they 
extract the exuding juice. By the introduction of some virulent poi- 
son into these flowers, numbers of them might be destroyed. These^ 


258 Tobacco Culture in Pennsylvania. {^i™;?*™' 

also, belong to the order Lepidoptera. The larvae are very destruc- 
tive to the leaves, and I have known instances in which one worm has 
eaten an entire plant in a single night. They are watched very closely, 
picked off by hand, and destroyed. 

Of late years a very destructive enemy, in different species of 
4t Arma " (Arma modesta, macula, &c), has been noticed. These belong 
to the order Hemiptera, or half-ringed insects, and deposit their eggs 
in patches of thirty to fifty. When the young are hatched, they 
puncture the leaves, and suck the juices of the plant. When a leaf 
has been punctured by these insects, it rapidly withers, and presents 
the appearance of having been scalded. As yet no practical method 
has been adopted for the destruction of this enemy. 

When tobacco is ripe, or fit to cut, it assumes a peculiar yellowish- 
green color, and when the under side of the leaf is bent it is brittle, 
and breaks easily. When in proper condition to be gathered, it is cut 
off close to the ground, and hung up to dry. Various methods have 
been proposed for hanging it up, but the most approved, and the one 
generally adopted, is to pierce the base of the stem by a steel spear, in 
which is fitted an ordinary plastering lath. By this means five or six 
stalks are slipped on one lath, and handled and hung up as easily as one. 
The largest growers have sheds built purposely for drying and curing. 
These are closed in by alternate boards hung on hinges, so that they 
may be opened for the free circulation of air on favorable days. To- 
bacco, when dried and cured, is of a brownish-yellow color, very crisp 
and brittle, and easily broken when handled, but when moistened it 
becomes quite pliable. 

After the 1st of Deccember the tobacco is "stripped." By this is 
meant the separation of the leaves from the stems. They are then 
assorted into two grades, viz., " fillers " and <c wrappers." The for- 
mer consists of " ground " leaves, and those which have been torn or 
worm-eaten ; the latter, wholly of fine, perfect leaves. These names 
are derived from the relative positions the grades take in cigars. The 
different grades are then bound into small bundles, by wrapping one 
leaf around the bases of a dozen others. After being pressed in cases 
it is ready for market. The term " stripping," as applied by the culti- 
vator, should not be confounded with the same term used by the man- 
ufacturer, which refers to the separation of the midrib from the leaf. 


An >n e U , r i8 P 7 6 arm '} Spiritus Mtheris Nitrosi. 259 



Within the last decade, or since I first began to take an interest in 
pharmacy, numerous complaints have been made by pharmacists as to 
the quality of spirit of nitrous ether, as furnished by manufacturing 
chemists, and also that which is found in the market, and represented 
to be made by reliable manufacturers. Some of the many complaints 
are that the preparation is deficient in nitrous ether, and that it con- 
tains too much water, besides acetic and nitrogen acids, aldehyd and 
ethyl chloride. My first attempt towards examining commercial spirit 
of nitre was made about a year or two ago, after having purchased a 
small quantity from a wholesale drug house in New York city, which 
I considered enjoyed an excellent reputation, and from which I thought 
pure and unadulterated preparations could be obtained. My attention 
was directed to the color and odor of the article ; it was almost color- 
less, and comparatively destitute of the nitrous ether odor character- 
istic of the preparation. Pure nitrous ether is of a decidedly yellow 
color, and, as spirit of nitre contains between four and five per cent, 
of it, the officinal spirit must necessarily have a yellowish color. 
Although exposure to light would soon make it colorless, I am under 
the impression such was not the case with the preparation just alluded 
to, as, upon examination, it was found to contain but 1*8 per cent, of 
ordinary ethyl nitrite, and its specific gravity was but 0*920, indicat- 
ing a large addition of water. The writer would here take the liberty 
to suggest to the readers of the " Journal " that it is absolutely neces- 
sary that some change should be made in the preservation of this highly 
important and valuable preparation. Those pharmacists who manufac- 
ture it themselves, I take for granted, know why it should be excluded 
from light and air, and kept only in small bottles. 

The blame cannot and should not always be placed on the manufac- 
turing chemists, of putting a worthless article of this kind in the mar- 
ket, as, by the writer's analysis of some of the more prominent brands, 
it will be observed that one of them was in excellent state of preser- 
vation, while some of the others bear a good examination, and are thus 
out of the reach of critics. That obtained from retail sources, and 
procured from pharmacists living in my vicinity, was, in the majority 
of cases, entirely unfit for use, and should not be dispensed as a medi- 
cine. This would seem to reflect on the probity of some of our 
wholesale and retail dealers where the sophistication was made. Which 


Spirit us JEtheris Nitrosi. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

of the two would be guilty of such an ignominious transaction I am 
not prepared to say, as all the nitre that I examined was obtained from 
retail druggists, with the exception of those marked otherwise. 

It is greatly to be regretted by all those interested in the promotion 
of the science of pharmacy that so many incompetent or unskilled per- 
sons are allowed to practice it. By way of exemplification, I desire to 
give the readers some idea of a class of druggists that the pharmacists 
in this country have to contend with. In conversation with a drug- 
gist on the above subject, he laughed at the idea of a pharmacist offer- 
ing for sale spirit of nitrous ether. " Why," said he, " I sell the pure 
nitrous ether itself, and it is the only thing that should be sold when 
spt. nit. aeth. is called for." A friend of mine, representing a whole- 
sale drug house, from Philadelphia, informs me that he called on a 
druggist for the purpose of selling him a bill of goods. It was about 
the time the new " Pharmacopoeia " was published. He asked the 
druggist if he did not want one. The druggist wanted to know what 
it was ; thought it was some new medicine or quack nostrum, and 
refused purchasing for those reasons. When informed that it was a 
book of great value to druggsits, and that it should be in possession of 
every one, his reply was that he could get along without so many 

I must not get off my subject ; but I simply referred to this class of 
druggists to show the necessity of reform, and of having none but 
qualified and competent pharmacists. I am satisfied, if we had a more 
intelligent body of pharmacists, spirit of nitrous ether could be obtained 
of a far superior quality, as considerable of it spoils owing to the inse- 
cure condition in which it is kept ; and of course the same will apply 
to almost any other drug. I know of a retail druggist who buys spirit 
of nitre by the carboy, and, not knowing the injurious and destruc- 
tive influence of atmospheric air and moisture, takes no pains to see 
that the carboy is securely stoppered, but simply drops the stopper 
loosely into the neck of the carboy, and allows it so to remain. In 
justice to the pharmacist, and more especially to the patient and physi- 
cian, manufacturers should not fill it in carboys, but in half-pound or 
pound bottles, similar in style to that in which Dr. Squibb puts it up. 
From my investigations I would come to the conclusion that it would 
be advisable for pharmacists to make their own nitre ; prepare it in 
small quantities, as wanted, and see that it is well preserved. Recently, 
I have been making all I needed, and find it economical as well as a 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

Spiritus Mtheris Nitrosi. 


pleasure, with the satisfaction, in addition, to know that it thoroughly 
represents the article required by the " Pharmacopoeia." The officinal 
process is simple, the directions explicit, and the expense but trifling in 
purchasing a Liebig's condenser, a retort and thermometer — all the 
apparatus required. 

snuiii^ uo uonoy 





ppy 3u}ij<[ tjiim pa 

A trace 


A trace 

A trace 

•ppy 'K^FS P UB 
uojj jo "qdjng qiiAY 
pajna-n uaiiAV uAvoqs 
sb sppy uaSojj;^; 

No change 

Light olive 

Dark olive 

Pale olive 


Dark olive 

Light olive 

No change 

•OBienQ -jdui x u; pa 
-S-iaiuui; AisnoiAaid 
jadej Aq uMoqs 
sb sppy uaSoaj;^; 

Faint blue 

A decided 
blue color 

Dark blue 


Blue color 

Light blue 


•pXqapjy joj 
bssbjoj jo uoiin[og 
qjiAV pajBaai U3HA\ 

No deposit, light 
red solution 

No deposit, red 

Heavy deposit, 
dark red solu- 

Light deposited 

Heavy deposit, 
dark solution 

No deposit, light 

No deposit, light 
red solution 

•ajBUoqjBOig uinip 
-og qi;^ pa?Baj; uaq^. 

No effervescence 

Slight effervesc- 
ence produced 


quite active 





Very slight effer- 
vescence per- 

No effervescnce 

l£q?3 jo 'luao jaj 

•Aiiabjq oypadg 


pauiBjqo .to Aq apBf\[ 

o c 

The last examined was prepared by the writer, and was examined 
shortly after it was made. 
Pottsville, Pa., May id, 1876. 

262 Extract of Jalap. { Am j^S£ m - 



The formula of the U U. S. Pharmacopoeia" for the preparation of 
the extract of jalap is : 

Take of Jalap, in moderately fine powder, 12 Troyounces, 

Alcohol, 4 pints, 

Water, a sufficient quantity. 

Introduce the powder, previously mixed with 3 fluidounces of alco- 
hol into a conical percolator, and gradually pour upon it the remainder 
of the alcohol. When the liquid ceases to pass, pour sufficient water 
upon the residue to keep its surface covered, until 4 pints of tincture 
have passed. Set this portion aside, and continue the percolation until 
6 pints of infusion have been obtained. Distill off the alcohol from 
the tincture, and evaporate the infusion until the liquids respectively 
have been brought to the consistence of thin honey ; then mix them, 
and evaporate them to the proper consistence. 

The expression, "introduce into a percolator is rather indefinite. It 
leaves the operator to guess whether to use light, heavy or no pressure 
at all. I find, that in the first part of the process, where the jalap is 
exhausted with alcohol, no matter how firm it is packed, the alcohol 
will pass freely, and without difficulty. The trouble commences when 
the water is poured on. According to how the powder was pressed 
in the percolator, the water will penetrate ; if firmly, very slow ; and 
when it has penetrated two-thirds, which takes about ten days, it is so 
overcharged with extract that it will not advance perceptibly. When 
the powder is loosely packed, the water penetrates somewhat faster ; 
but, when two-thirds of the mass is penetrated, the same difficulty 
occurs. The line between the alcoholic tincture and water is well 
defined — the latter in its descent becoming charged with extract, as- 
sumes a dark-brown, almost black color. If the apparatus is now left 
to itself, it may stand months, and still percolation will not be finished. 
To accelerate the process, I found the following to be about the best 
method : I poured water on the powder until it stood above the latter 
five inches, and then, at intervals, stirred the mass down to the line of 
separation. The stirring re-incorporates the thick, viscid, dark-colored 
line of separation, and gives the thinned liquid a better chance to pen- 
etrate. By this mode the alcoholic tincture was driven out in a com- 
paratively short time. The tincture measured 3 pints and 14 fluid- 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

Extract of Jalap. 


ounces, showing a loss of 2 fluidounces. The process was conducted 
in a common J gal. glass percolator, without air-tight lid. The orifice 
of the percolator was then closed, the mass well stired, and poured on 
a star filter. Gradually pouring water on the filter, after twelve hours y 
4 pints of infusion had been obtained, and the jalap was almost ex- 
hausted, at least so much so, that the additional extract to be gained 
would not compensate further percolation and cost of subsequent evap- 
oration. After concentration and evaporation to the proper consistence, 
the product was found to weigh ounces — being 54 per cent, of the 
jalap employed. 

To see whether percolation by water would proceed more favorably 
with coarse powder, • since moderately fine powder, as seen above,, 
whether firmly or loosely packed, or only loosely placed in the perco- 
lator, when left undisturbed would not let the water pass ; I took one 
pound of jalap root, ground so as to pass through a sieve of sixteen 
meshes to the linear inch, moistened it with 4 fluidounces of alcohol, 
and packed it very tight in an air-tight glass percolator, and poured on 
alcohol gradually, until 4 pints had been used. From the use of this 
quantity of alcohol the jalap seemed to be exhausted ; water was then 
poured on, and it took about an hour to displace the remaining alco- 
holic tincture. The tincture measured 3 pints, 15J fluidounces, show- 
ing that only J fluidounce of alcohol had been lost. The dark line 
between the alcoholic tincture and the water could not be well dis- 
cerned until the latter had penetrated very near to the bottom. As 
already mentioned, it took an hour for the water to penetrate the jalap. 
Dropping was at first slow — the infusion being thick like honey — but, 
by-and-by, it got thinned, and the drows fell faster. When 2 pints of 
infusion had been obtained, percolation ceased altogether, — the powder 
in the percolator having in the mean time swollen to two and a half 
times its original bulk, and would not let any more water pass. The 
respective liquids were evaporated, mixed, brought to the proper consis- 
tence, and the product was found to weigh 7 ounces, or 43*75 per cent, 
of the root employed. 

There is another method for preparing the extract, obviating the 
drying and the very disagreeable work of powdering the root. It is : 
To place the whole root in a vessel with a perforated bottom, and to 
suspend it in a vessel of water in such a manner that all of the root 
will be immersed in it. The heavy infusion will sink to the bottom, 


Extract of Jalap. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

and, after some time, all of the water will be saturated, whereupon, 
the root must be suspended in a fresh quantity of menstruum, and this 
repeated until it is exhausted. Now the root is superficially dried, 
pounded into a fine mass, packed moderately firm in a percolator, and 
displaced with alcohol. For one pound of root 4 pints of alcohol will 
be found amply sufficient. When percolation ceases, the alcoholic 
tincture remaining in the mass is displaced by water, which only 
takes a short time. The yield by this process was found to be 9 
ounces of extract from one pound of root, or 56 per cent. 

Passing the three different methods in review, the conclusion is ar- 
rived at, that, although the product by the first process is satisfactory in 
amount, still the last mentioned is superior on account of the greatest 
yield of extract, and the least difficulty in handling the ingredients. 

There is one fact in regard to extract of jalap to which I wish to 
draw particular attention, viz. : the great difference in the price be- 
tween it and the root. The former is quoted at from $4.50 to $5.00, 
and the latter can be bought for $0.30 a pound. If it is taken into 
consideration, that from two pounds of the root one pound of extract 
is easily obtained — the disproportion in price is at once apparent. The 
following accounts will explain this more minutely : In account No. 
1, 7 pints of alcohol is regained by distillation; in No. 2, all the alco- 
hol is lost by evaporation. 

No. II. 

Wholesale price of one pound of 

extract, $4-5° 

Cost of Material. 
2 lbs. Jalap root, @ $0.30, . #0.60 

1 gal. alcohol, 2.30 

Fire cost of 15 

Total, $3.05 

Difference, $3-464 Leaves difference, $1-45 

The above shows that when the alcohol is regained by distillation, 
one pound of extract can be made for $1.03 J, and, when it is lost, for 
$3,05, leaving in the former case $3.40^, and in the latter $1.45 net 
profit, as compared with the wholesale price. 

Lowell, N. St. Louis, Mo. 

No. I. 

Wholesale price of one pound of 

extract, #4-5° 

Cost of Material. 
2 lbs. Jalap root, @ #0.30, $0.60 
1 pt. lost alcohol, (a) $2.30, . o.28| 
Fire, 15 

Total, $i-°3f 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
June, 1876. J 

Extract of Jalap. 




The preceding valuable and practical paper, by Mr. Klie, suggests 
some remarks on the necessity of modifying the officinal process on 
the occasion of the next revision of the " Pharmacopoeia." 

Pereira, in commenting upon the process of the former " London 
Pharmacopoeia," after which that of the " U. S. Pharmacopoeia " was 
modeled, states : " It was, formerly, and, indeed, is now, by many 
persons, supposed that the combination of these ingredients (/. f., the 
resin and gummy extractive,) was necessary for the full cathartic 
effect of jalap. It is, however, well known that the watery extract is 
inert as a purgative, though it is said to be diuretic ; the only advan- 
tage, therefore, that can attend the mixture of the two extracts (the 
watery and the alcoholic) is that the resin is intimately divided, and 
thereby prevented from causing violent irritation and griping in any 
one part of the intestinal tube. But it is obvious that the same advan- 
tage can be obtained by mixing the resin with some mild agent (as 
almonds, sugar or saline matter)." 

In 1864, Mr. Alfred B. Taylor reported to the American Pharma- 
ceutical Association the result of some experiments (see " Am. Jour. 
Phar.," 1865, p. 219), according to which the aqueous extract, ob- 
tained from jalap, previously exhausted by alcohol, is without any 
laxative or diuretic effect. 

Most of the Pharmacopoeias of continental Europe have long since 
(some for more than fifty years) discarded the extract and introduced 
in its place the resin of jalap. The few Pharmacopoeias in which an 
extract of jalap is still officinal, prepare it (we believe with the sole 
exception of the U. S. and British Pharmacopoeias) similar to the 
French codex, by exhausting the powdered root with alcohol, and 
evaporating the tincture. Thus prepared, the extract of jalap is nearly 
identical with the resin, or rather it consists of resin with a compara- 
tively small quantity of matter soluble in water, amounting, in all, to 
perhaps ten per cent, of its weight. In this portion will be found, 
besides some sugar, a body having some resemblance to resin, but 
differing from this class of bodies by being soluble in water. It is not 
unlikely that to this principle must be ascribed the mild purgative and 
diuretic properties, which, according to some old works on Materia 
Medica, are ascribed to the aqueous extract. 


A Suggestion to Physicians. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

Some eight or ten years ago the writer, while preparing a larger 
quantity of the resin, by the officinal process, saved the washings, and, 
by evaporation, obtained an extract, which was employed by several 
physicians, and found to possess some advantage as a mild laxative., 
more particularly applicable for children and feeble adults. Whether 
these properties are of sufficient importance to warrant retaining as 
officinal, an extract and resin of jalap, remains to be determined by 
further investigations, to which we would herewith direct the atten- 
tion of the readers of the "Journal." But the point appears to be 
well settled that the gummy extract obtained from jalap, by water, 
after previous exhaustion by alcohol, is destitute of medicinal proper- 
ties, and should be omitted in the next revision of the " Pharma- 

(" This prescription must not be renewed"} 


The above words (or something of similar import) are familiar to 
every dispenser, and are to be found printed on nearly every kind of 
prescription blanks. I would respectfully suggest that said words be 
written every time when found necessary, in order to save the dis- 
penser a great deal of trouble. 

The trouble comes in this way : Suppose a physician prescribes a 
very active preparation (and perhaps in an unusual dose) which he does 
not wish to be renewed ; he relies on the printed formula and on the 
dispenser's common sense. 

Suppose, further, that said medicine has done the patient a great deal 
of good, and he wants it made over again, he comes again himself or 
sends somebody to the drug-store. There now ensues a conversation 
somewhat in the following fashion : 

The dispenser expresses his regret that he cannot comply with the 
wish of the patient ; but the physician does not want it done. 

" How do you know ?" 

" Why, you see here, this prescription must not be renewed." 

u Well, but that means nothing, I am sure. You see it is printed, 
and will, of course, apply to everything written on the prescription 
paper. Suppose the doctor had prescribed sweet spirits of nitre, for 
instance, you could surely not refuse to renew that." 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

Wafer Machine and Press, 


The dispenser admits this point, but still refuses to renew the pre- 
scription, and tries everything to convince the customer that he is 
bound not to do it. All the thanks he gets for his pains are something 
like the following : 

. " I must tell you, sir, that you are a very disobliging man. I shall 
never come to you again !" Exit. 

If, now, the physician had written said words, the customer would 
have been able to understand that the dispenser did but his duty when 
he refused to renew the medicine. 



(Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting held May 23^.) 

Numerous writers have advocated the advantages of wafer capsules, 
and while doing this, have condemned those of American manufacture ; 
the objection urged is their appearance, it being not denied that they 
are quite as suitable for the intended purpose as the imported article. 

The apparatus exhibited herewith presents in a compact form all 
that is required to manufacture from wafer sheets, concave wafer discs 
and a press to seal them for use. It consists of two metallic dies of 
the same size, one of which has one of its faces turned to the proper 
concave form ; the other has a corresponding convex face, and on the 
opposite side a hole is bored to allow of the insertion of a wooden 
handle. These dies are moderately heated, a flat wafer disc is inserted 
and pressure applied for a moment, when upon separation of the dies,, 
the disc will be found to have the desired shape. 

The flat discs are cut from sheet wafers by a punch similar to a 
cork borer — the other end of which is arranged so as to form the 

The addition of a duplicate concave die will furnish the press, and 
complete the apparatus. 



(Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, held May 23^.) 
At the Pharmaceutical Meeting, held in the College hall on the 
21st of March, Mr. J. C. Biddle recommended the incorporation of 


Sugar of Milk. 

f Am. Jour Pharm. 
\ Jnne, 1876. 

sugar of milk with powdered squill, in order to prevent caking. This 
ted me to believe that this substance could be used to attain the 
same effect in a large number of the gum resins that are often required 
in the state of powder, and which cannot be reduced unless previously 
heated, which process is very liable to endanger or completely subvert 
the therapeutical value ; or, if powdered by any other means, it fails 
to reach the wants of the pharmacist, by reason that the state of 
powder is merely temporary. Belonging to this class of substances 
are ammoniac, assafoetida, galbanum, guaiac, myrrh and a large number 
of others. 

Now, to preserve these substances in the state of fine powder, and 
in a condition that they may be dispensed on the prescriptions of physi- 
cians in a thoroughly pharmaceutical manner, I would recommend that 
sugar of milk be added and triturated in the proportion of either 
three parts of the gum resin to one of sugar of milk, or of two of the 
former to one of the latter, — the powder to be preserved in well- 
stoppered bottles. 

For guaiac resin and squill, I use 90 parts to 10 of sugar of milk. It 
may be well to state, that the cooler the weather the less time is re- 
quired for trituration. To preserve camphor in a form of powder, I 
find sugar of milk answers better than any other substance that has 
been recommended. Below is given the quantity of sugar of milk 
required : 

Take of camphor, .... 90 grains. 

alcohol, . . . . -30 drops, 
sugar of milk, . . . 10 grains. 
Rub the camphor first with the alcohol, until reduced to a fine powder, then with 
the sugar of milk. 

The sample on the table was powdered in this manner, about two 
months ago. 

At the suggestion of Prof. John M. Maisch, I was induced to try 
sugar of milk in preparing mercurial pill and mercury with chalk, which 
two preparations are very seldom manufactured by the apothecary, for 
the reason, of the great difficulty encountered in extinguishing the 
mercury. In preparing blue pill, I find, to my entire satisfaction, by 
substituting sugar of milk for powdered liquorice root, and with a 
slight modification of the officinal process, this difficulty can be readily 
overcome. I recommend the following process for 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

Sugar of Milk. 


Pilula Hydrargyri: Take of mercury, 

confection of rose, 

sugar of milk, . . . ad %i 
Rub the mercury with the confection of rose and sugar of milk, until metallic 
globules are no longer visible. 

Blue mass, prepared in this manner, has about the same pilular 
consistence as when prepared by the formula of the " U. S. Pharmaco- 
poeia." The blue pill is often wanted in the state of powder ; this has 
led to quite a number of suggestions. Some have recommended 
rubbing together mercury with honey, until globules of mercury cease 
to be visible, and then incorporating other ingredients, the whole to be 
set aside in a warm place to dry, and then reduced to powder. Others 
recommend rubbing the mercury with syrup and sugar, and dry by the 
aid of heat. I may here state that both of these processes are exceed- 
ingly objectionable, as when heat is employed or when left in contact 
with the air, the mercury becomes oxidized, and renders the prepara- 
tion entirely too active. Also when honey or sugar are employed,, 
the preparation is liable to attract moisture from the atmosphere, which 
causes it to cake together and become hard. 

To remedy this, and at the same time produce a perfect division of 
the mercury, I would suggest the following method for making 
Pul'vis Pili Hydrargyri. — Take of mercury, 

sugar of milk, Sjii 

Triturate the mixture thoroughly until the powder will pass through a fine sieve,, 
or fine bolting cloth. 

Prepared in this manner, powdered blue mass is a light-grayish pow- 
der, and incapable of attracting moisture ; and so thoroughly is the 
minute state of division, that globules of mercury cannot be seen with 
the aid of a lens. This preparation is also well suited for conversion 
into the pilular form. 

Mercury with chalk, made according to the formula in the " U. S. 
Pharmacopoeia," does not come up to the wants of the physician, on 
account of the imperfect division of the mercury ; and, owing to this 
fact, it has fallen considerable into disuse. After trying various means > 
none answered so well and was as convenient as sugar of milk. I 

prepare it in the following manner : 

Hydrargrum cum Cretd : Take of Mercury, . . . ^iii 

Prepared chalk, . . ^iv 
Sugar of milk, . . 

Rub the mercury, prepared chalk and sugar of milk into an impalpable powder, 
and pass it through a fine sieve. 

270 Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. { Am -j{Te r ;x8 7 h 6 arm - 

The above formula, although not containing the same amount of 
prepared chalk, contains the metallic mercury in the same proportion 
(3 in 8) as called for in the " U. S. Pharmacopoeia," and I think is 
more efficacious as a remedy, as the mercury is more thoroughly 

In the above, I state the result of my manipulations with sugar of 
milk and those substances that are required to be in a very minute 
state of division ; and I feel confident that those who will employ this 
substance in the manner and for the purpose I have described, cannot 
fail to acknowledge that sugar of milk is preferable to all other sub- 
stances. Being perfectly harmless, of a hard, gritty nature, and chemi- 
cally a perfectly definite material, I feel certain that it will supercede the 
old practice of employing heat in powdering the gum resins. More- 
over, in dispensing emulsions, sugar of milk materially assists in the 
formation of a perfect emulsion, by reason of the minute state of di- 
vision of the gum resin, induced by the trituration of sugar of milk 
with the drug. 



The Decomposition of White Precipitate by Iodine, Chlorine and Bromine. 
— V. Schwarzenbach has observed that iodine may be triturated with 
white precipitate, or heated with it in a crucible, without any other 
result being observed, especially in the latter case, than the formation 
of beautiful red crystals of mercuric iodide. But, if alcohol be added 
to the mixture, in an open vessel, after some time (about 35 minutes) 
a smart explosion takes place, which inevitably destroys the vessel, if 
it be of glass, but only to the exact height reached by the surface of 
the liquid. Up to the time of explosion no rise in temperature was 
observed, and the inserted thermometer remained uninjured when the 
vessel was destroyed. In direct sunlight, the explosion followed more 
rapidly, frequently in 9 or 10 minutes. Among the products, scat- 
tered by the explosion, were red mercuric iodide, and strongly detonat- 
ing particles of nitrogen iodide of considerable size ; the gas evolved 
was identified as nitrogen. If chloroform or amylic alcohol are used, 
instead of ethylic alcohol, and the iodine is increased .to six atoms 
for two molecules of white precipitate, strong detonations occur in 
the liquid. 

Ato j^ne, r i876 arm '} Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. 271 

When powdered white precipitate is dropped into an open flask, 
filled with chlorine, it becomes strongly heated, after a few minutes, 
and assumes an appearance of ebullition, followed either by an explo- 
sion or, more frequently, by the appearance of a greenish flame, free 
nitrogen, nitrogen chloride and mercuric chloride being formed. 

The action of bromine, upon white precipitate, was found to be 
very analogous to the foregoing. — Pharm. Jour, and Trans., 1876, 
March 11, from Ber. D. Cbem. Ges., vol. viii. 

Mr. Charles Rice, having observed detonations occurring while 
triturating white precipitate with tincture of iodine, reports, in 
" New Remedies," for February, that the addition of carbolic acid 
prevents the explosion and generates some iodoform, equal to about 
two per cent, of the iodine employed. Without alcohol, iodine and 
white precipitate produce no iodide of nitrogen, nor does a solution 
of iodine in carbolic acid, without alcohol, produce iodoform. The 
investigations were instituted on noticing that, while making an oint- 
ment composed of Tinct. iodinii 3ss. Hydrarg. ammon. gr.ii, and 
Ung. acidi carbol. ^i, a sudden fading of color took place, and the 
resulting ointment was entirely white. 

An assay of persian opium was recently made by W. D. Howard ; it 
had been sent to England as " perfectly pure," and yielded, not pre- 
viously dried : morphia, crystallized from alcohol, 10*40 ; codeia 
(anhydrous), 0*29 ; narcotina, 2*50 ; thebaina, 0*57 ; cryptopia, 0*09 per 
cent., and a trace of papaverina. — Pharm. four, and Trans., 1876, 
March 11. 

Impure Potassium Iodide. — Thos. F. Best has found, in five samples, 
the following excess of alkali, consisting chiefly of carbonate: 5*44, 
5*35, 2*32, 1*78 and 0*53 per cent. Commercially pure iodide should 
not contain more than from 0*15 to 0'20 per cent. — Ibid. 

Detection of Free Mineral Acids in Vinegar. — Witz has proposed 
methylanilin-violet for this purpose. A. Hilger, in experimenting 
with it, observed that pure vinegar does not affect the color, but on 
the addition of sulphuric acid the color is changed, with one-fifth per 
cent, to blue, with one-half per cent, to blue-green, and with one per- 
cent, green. Similar changes occur with muriatic acid, one-tenth per 
cent, producing a blue, one-fifth per cent, a green color, and with one 
per cent, the color disappears. Much smaller quantities of free min- 

272 Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. { Am ji/™- x8 p 3 Jf nn - 

eral acids may, however, be detected by evaporating the vinegar, with 
some of the violet, to a small bulk. 

The color solution was made by dissolving O'Oi grm. methylanilin- 
violet in 100 grm. of water, and 2 to 3 drops of this solution are used 
for 25 cc. of vinegar. The method is not applicable for the quantita- 
tive determination of the free mineral acids, the change to violet, on 
neutralizing with alkali, occurring gradually. — Archiv d. Pharm , 1876,, 
March, 193-196. 

Chloral- Chloroform, which was, several years ago (see " Am. Jour. 
Pharm," 1870, p. 319 and 409 ; 1871, p. 410), recommended as being 
preferable to ordinarily prepared chloroform, on account of its not 
being decomposed by light, has again been examined by Dr. Schacht > 
and found to alter in the light as rapidly as the latter, unless preserved 
by the addition of a little alcohol. — Pharm. Zeit., No. 26. 

The quantitative separation of morphia from sugar cannot be effected 
by the processes recommended for the quantitative estimation of that 
alkaloid. Dr. Schacht has made numerous experiments on this subject,, 
and is continuing his investigations. — Ibid. 

Butyl chloral. — Dr. Oscar Liebreich states that Kramer and Pinner 
have ascertained that the substance commonly called croton-chloral 
contains 2H more than was supposed, and is, in fact, butyl-chloral. 
Soda decomposes it, forming chloride and formiate of sodium, and 
bichlorallylene. According to Liebreich, chloral causes death by 
interfering with the cardiac ganglia ; butyl-chloral, by its action on the 
respiratory centre. With the latter, anaesthesia commences at the 
head, while reflex action can still be excited on the limbs. Doses of 
butyl-chloral, sufficient merely to produce anaesthesia of the head, do 
not essentially affect the pulse and respiration. In insane adults, 5 
grams were found to produce sleep and anaesthesia of the head, with 
maintenance of the muscular tonus, and of reflex action in the 
trunk, so that the patients remained sitting, while the head was per- 
fectly anaesthetic. 

Liebreich orders it in the following form : butyl-chloral hydrate, 
5 to 10 parts ; glycerin, 20 parts ; distilled water, 130 grams ; the 
mixture to be shaken before being used. The dose is half an ounce, 
to be followed, in five minutes, by a second, and, in ten minutes, by a 
third. It is well to commence with a small dose, to avoid producing 

Am june% P 876 arm } Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. 273 

hypnotism, where the anaesthetic effect alone is desired. To produce 
sleep, one, two or three grams, according to the patient's constitu- 
tion, are to be given at bed-time. — Pharm. your, and Trans., 1876, 
February 19. 

Myrrh, according to W. Dymock, comes to Bombay from Berbera v 
where it is purchased by agents residing at Aden or Makulla. The 
bags or bales, when opened in Bombay, are found to be made up of, 1 y „ 
a large proportion of roundish masses of fine myrrh ; 2, a considerable 
proportion of small semi-transparent pieces of myrrh, of irregular shape \, 
3, numerous pieces of dark-colored myrrh, mixed with bark and other 
refuse ; 4, a small proportion of an opaque gum resin (Bdellium opaque y 
of Guibourt ?) ; occasionally small pieces of resin (juniper ?) are also 
met with. The contents are sorted, the best myrrh going to Europe, 
the darker pieces forming a second quality, and the refuse being 
exported to China, where it is probably used as incense. True myrrh 
is known in the local market as karam, the opaque bdellium as meena 
h&rrna. The latter is used for the extraction of the Guinea worm ; it 
resembles ammoniacum ; is yellowish-white and bitter, with hardly any 

The Arabian myrrh of the " Pharmacographia " is received from 
Makulla and Aden, and is known as meetiga ; no true myrrh is ever 
received from Arabia. 

Bdellium comes also from Berbera. Besides the ordinary bdellium,, 
the bales contain a small quantity of a perfumed kind, occurring in 
irregularly shaped pieces, more or less flat, some of them having frag- 
ments of thick bark adhering. The color of the gum is dark reddish- 
brown, but opaque yellowish-white streaks are frequently met with in 
the semi-transparent mass. The odor, on fresh fracture, is powerful 
and pleasant, not unlike a lemon lollipop. The Arabic name is h&bak 

Indian bdellium comes chiefly from Deccan ; in form and appear- 
ance it resembles the African drug, the pieces often having pieces of a 
papery bark attached to them ; but the color is greenish, and the odor, 
though similar, is more faint. Its value is one-third less than the 
African bdellium. — Pharm. Jour, and Trans., 1876, Feb. 19. 

Damiana. — The three varieties of Damiana ("Amer. Jour. Pharm.," 
1875, p. 518) have been examined, as to their botanical origin, by Mr. 


274 The International Exposition. { Am jine, r 'x8 7 6 arm - 

E. M. Holmes. That of Helwick & Co. comes from a plant of the 
genus Turnera, nat. order Turneracece, allied to Turnera microphylla, 
D. C. The San Francisco damiana appears to be a hairy variety of 
the same plant, and has a taste recalling that of confection of senna 
(not sage like, as stated on page 519 of last volume). The third kind 
of damiana is the Aplopappus (now called Haplopappus) discoideus, D. C, 
the leaves of which taste like sage. — Pharm. 'Jour, and Trans. , 1876, 
Jan. 22. 

Dr. J. T. Rothrock, of Wilkesbarre, Pa., published a paper on the 
last mentioned variety of damiana in the " Phila. Med. and Surg. Re- 
porter," March 4. He arrived at the same conclusion, and gives the 
following synonyms for the plant : Linosyris mexicana, Schlechtendal ; 
Baccharis veneta, Humboldt, Bonpland and Kunth, and Bigelovia veneta, 
Gray. It is a common plant in Mexico, and another closely allied 
species, which by some is considered identical with the preceding Bige- 
lovia Menziesn, Gray, is found in California and Arizona. Prof. Gray 
has confirmed these conclusions. 



The International Exposition in Philadelphia, which was formally opened by the 
President of the United States on the tenth of May, is the seventh which has 
taken place during a period of twenty-five years. The first one being inaugurated 
in London, it was followed by the one in New York in 1853, which, although a 
failure in more than one respect, nevertheless exerted a powerful influence upon the 
development of arts and industries in this country, and served likewise to make the 
United States better known in foreign countries. Paris followed in 1855, London 
again in 1862, Paris in 1867 and Vienna in 1873. Several international exhibitions 
of special industries having in the meantime been held in various other European 
cities, a grand fair of the entire industries of all civilized nations was undertaken in 
commemoration of the centennial anniversary of the independence of the United 
States, and Philadelphia, from which place the declaration of independence ema- 
nated, was selected as the most fitting place to celebrate the one hundredth anniver- 
sary of that historical event. 

The ground chosen for the grand gathering is in West Fairmount Park. The 
park takes its name from that portion of the public grounds where the principal 
water-works and the oldest of the present reservoirs have been built, which are still 
known as the Fairmount water-works and basins. From these works the present 
Park extends in a northerly and westerly direction, on both banks of the Schuylkill 
river, following afterwards the circuitous bed of Wissahickon creek, comprising, 
altogether, an area of 2,991 acres, and being divided by the Schuylkill into an east- 

Am iune ) r 'i8 P 7 6 arm *} The International Exposition. 275 

ern and western section. In the latter portion, from Girard avenue north, the hills 
rise suddenly to 116 feet above the Schuylkill, forming the extended Lansdowne 
Terrace upon which the Exhibition buildings have been erected. 

These buildings are, altogether, over 190 in number, a few of which are still 
unfinished at this date. The largest number of these have been erected for special 
purposes, special exhibits, and for the accommodation and special interest of the 
various nations and States represented. Those buildings which are intended to 
accommodate the arts and industries of all nations are few in numbers, but neces- 
sarily very extensive. 

The Main Exhibition Building forms a parallelogram 1,880 feet in length and 464 
in width, and covering upon the ground floor an area of 20*02 acres, or 872,320 
square feet. Nearly the whole structure forms one story, with a central height of 
70 feet, the sides being 24 feet high. In the projections and towers are upper floors, 
with an area of nearly 64,000 square feet, or almost i\ acre. 

Machinery Hall is located west of the former, and has a length of 1,402 feet, and 
a width of 360 feet, with an annex of 208 by 210 feet. It covers a ground space 
of 558,440 square feet, or 12*82 acres. 

Memorial Hall accommodates sculptures, paintings and other products of the fine 
arts, and has been erected with a view to permanence, no wood having been used in 
its construction, and every portion of the building being fire-proof. It occupies the 
most commanding portion of the plateau, and is 365 feet in length by 210 feet in 
width, and 59 feet in height, over a basement 12 feet high, and surmounted by a 
dome rising to 150 feet from the ground. It covers an aiea of 1*5 acre. 

The Horticultural Building, which covers the same area as Memorial Hall, 
and, like it, will not be taken down again, is situated north of it, has a length of 
383 feet, a width of 193 feet, and an extreme height of 72 feet. It consists of a 
central conservatory, 230 by 80 feet, and 55 feet high, and has on each of its long 
sides two forcing-houses, 100 by 30 feet, covered with curved roofs of iron and 
glass. The heating arrangements, etc., are in the fire-proof basement. 

The Agricultural Building is still farther north, and consists of a long nave, 
crossed by three transepts, the central one being 100, each of the two lateral ones 
80 feet wide. The nave has a length of 820 and a width of 120 feet 5 its extreme 
height, like that of the central transept, is 75 feet, the end transepts being 5 feet 
less. It covers an area of 10*15 acres. 

The buildings mentioned above comprise all the general Exhibition buildings. 
We have deemed it necessary to give a brief description of the si%e of these struc- 
tures, so that our readers may form some idea of the immense amount of products 
on exhibition. Those which are of greatest interest to the pharmacist and druggist 
will mostly be found in the Main Building, a few in the Agricultural Building, 
some plants yielding drugs in the Horticultural Building, and those pharmaceutical 
apparatus which, for successful manipulation, require steam-po-zver, in Machinery 

Articles of more or less pharmaceutical interest will, however, also be found in 
the extensive building erected by the United States Government and in the Women's 

The arrangement in the Exhibition halls is national, that is, a certain space has 




J Am. Jour. Pharm . 
I June, 1876. 

been allotted to each nation, and within this space the exhibits are arranged so as 
to show the most important industries to best advantage. To find and examine all 
that is important or of special interest to pharmacy requires, therefore, a journey of 
many miles within the Exhibition grounds. 

All the goods on exhibition have been placed in twenty-eight classes, the most 
important of which for us is Class III : " Chemistry and Pharmacy, with the appa- 
ratus/' for which the following international Jury of Awards has been appointed : 

American — Professor C. A. Joy, New York; Professor F. A. Genth, University 
of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pa. ; Professor J. Lawrence Smith, Louisville, Ky. ; 
Professor C. F. Chandler, New York ; Professor J. W. Mallet, University of Vir- 
ginia, Charlottesville, Va. Foreign — Dr. Odling, F.R.S., Great Britain; Dr. R. 
von Wagner, Germany; M. Kuhlmans (fils), France; Mr. Dewilde, Belgium. 

Articles of more or less interest to the drug trade will doubtless be found in some 
of the other classes. 


Sassafras as an Antidote to Vegetable Poison. — The Cincinnati " Lancet 
and Observer " for April, has a paper by Dr. A. W. T. Lyle, of Castleton, Ind., 
in which attention is called to the statement by Dr Thompson, of Nashville, con- 
cerning the antagonistic properties of sassafras to henbane and tobacco. Dr. Lyle 
mentions the case of a child four years old who had eaten stramonium flowers, and 
showed symptoms of poisoning. After the administration of emetics, ten drops of 
oil of sassafras were given every half hour until six doses had been taken, when con- 
sciousness returned, and, after taking a dose of castor oil, the child was playing the 
next day, and free from all pains or disturbances following poisoning. 

Hair Tonic. — The " Med. and Surg. Rep." for March 18th, gives the follow- 
ing from Erasmus Wilson's book on skin diseases, under the title of Lotio capillaria 
stimulans : Oil of almonds and strong ammonia water, each 1 oz., spirit of rose- 
mary 4 oz., balm water, 2 oz. 

Resolvent Ointment. — According to the " Med. and Surg. Rep.," the follow- 
ing ointment is employed with great success by Dr. Noel Gueneau de Mussy r 
Camphor one, ammonium chloride four, and lard thirty grams. 

Cure eor Corn. Bind raw cotton on your corn at night before going to bed, 
and then saturate the cotton with oil of turpentine. It will remove the most ob- 
stinate corn, either hard or soft, in four or five applications. The skin will be apt 
to peel off the toe, but this is rather an advantage, as it helps to remove the corn, 
— Correspondent of Scient. Amer. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

V arieties. 

Solution of Salicylic Acid. Prof. Emlen Painter proposes the following 
formula, whereby two grains of salicylic acid can be given in ateaspoonful of solu- 
tion. Dissolve salicylic acid gr. xxxii in liquor, aramon. acet. f^ii. The solution 
may be made without heat, is not unpleasant to take, and possesses quite percepti- 
bly the sweetish taste of the acid. Besides, solution of ammonium acetate would 
be likewise indicated in most cases where salicylic acid would be prescribed for in- 
ternal uses. Its cumulative action (see "Amer. Jour. Phar." 1876, p. 68), should 
not be lost sight of. — Pacif. Med. and Surg. Jour. 1876, April. 

The following notes are taken from the <s Leaflets for the Scrap-book," issued 
by Mr. M. S. Bidwell, of Elmira, N. Y., which were noticed in our December 
number : 

Hints to Prescribers. — Much perplexity might be saved to dispensers, and the dan- 
ger of error materially lessened, by the observance of the following simple sugges- 
tions : 

1. If the remedies prescribed are officinal, use the officinal terms; if not officinal, 
describe them unmistakably. The writer has heard of three different liquids called 
chloric ether, and has known Tully's Powder to be made of three very different de- 
grees of strength. 

2. Do not abbreviate so closely as to cause ambiguity ; hyd. chl. may mean calo- 
mel, corrosive sublimate, or chloral hydrate. 

3. Write the directions for use as they are to be put on the label. 

4. Give the patient's name, and mention if a child or infant. 

5. After writing the prescription, look it over and see if there is anything, espe- 
cially in the numerals, that a careless or ignorant druggist might misunderstand. 

Solubilities. — The following list gives approximately the number of grains of the 
salts mentioned, that can be readily dissolved in one ounce of water at the ordinary 
Semperatare. If this limit is much exceeded, a clear solution cannot be expected. 

Potassium iodide 500 

Ammonium bromide ........ 300 

Potassium bromide ......... 240 

do bicarbonate . . . . . . .120 

do nitrate . . . . . . . . .100 

Sodium borate ......... 40 

Potassium chlorate ......... 30 

Mercury bichloride . . . . . . . . 25 

It should be remembered that the bulk of the solution exceeds that of the sol- 
vent ; thus an ounce of water and an ounce of potassium iodide make about an 
ounce and a half of solution. 

Curious Incompatibility. — Chlorate of potassium and iodide of potassium are both 
entirely harmless in suitable doses. Furthermore, these two salts do not react upon 
each other in solution, even at a boiling heat. Yet it has been proved that when 
they are administered together, they do combine in the stomach, producing iodate 
of potassium, which is poisonous. M. Melsens found that dogs could take the chlo- 
rate or iodide in doses of five to seven grams with impunity, but that a mixture of 

278 Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. { Am '^;a^ 

the two killed them in a few days, with the symptoms of poisoning by iodate of 
potassium. This combination must therefore be avoided. Indeed, as a general 
rule, the chlorate is so unstable, and so ready to give up its oxygen, that it cannot 
safely be combined with any substance capable of oxidation. 

Notes on Disinfectants. — Salicylic acid loses its power entirely in an alkaline solu- 
tion, the salicylates not destroying fermentation germs. 

It has been taken internally to the amount of 1/5 grams (23 grs.) daily, without 
injury. About 3 grs. a day have been given as a prophylactic against diphtheria^ 
with apparent good result. 

Carbolate of Lime. — Chemical examination has shown that five out of six sam- 
ples in the market were nearly worthless, containing hardly any phenol, but owing 
their smells to various tar oils possessing little or no disinfectant power. An excel- 
lent carbolate may easily be made by mixing one part of crude carbolic acid with 
eight parts of slaked lime. 

Chloral hydrate is a powerful antiseptic, and has been used with special success in, 
preserving anatomical specimens. 

Beech Wax. By F. A. Fluckiger. — On the bark of beech trees there occurs a 
greyish film, formed by insects, fatty to the touch, and consisting, as shown by the 
microscope, of fine threads, which are easily broken up. The substance composing 
it is scarcely acted on by water. It gives up to boiling carbon bisulphide about 
one third of its weight of a wax crystallizing in white laminae, melting at 8i° — 82° 5 . 
and having the composition of cerotic acid, C^H^O.,. The wax, however, when 
dissolved in alcohol, does not redden litmus, as does cerotic acid, nor is it 
attacked by prolonged boiling with aqueous or alcoholic potash. — Jour. Chem. Soc* 
[Lond.], from Arch. Pharm. [3], vii, 8. 


The eighth regular meeting of the session was held May 23d, 1876, Edward 
Gaillard in the chair. The minutes of the previous meeting were read and ap- 

Mr. Edward Lindewald, of Stockholm, Sweden, was introduced and invited to 
participate in the meeting. Prof. Maisch donated to the cabinet, from Daniel B. 
Smith, some additional plants for the herbarium, and the press with which they had 
been pressed. They were accepted with thanks. 

The Registrar read a paper by Walter E. Bibby on the Pharmaceutical value of 
sugar of milk (see page 267). Prof. Maisch had remarked upon a former occasion 
that the observations made by the writer were of great importance to practical 
pharmacy and would repeat the statement. The sample of powdered myrrh ex- 
hibited, although apparently somewhat agglomerated, when rubbed between the 
fingers would be found to be in a fine state of division, and to judge from the odor,, 
contains the entire amount of volatile oil. The mercury with chalk, under an ordi- 
nary lens, appeared as a powder perfectly uniform in color, and was, to all appear- 
ances, free from oxides. The paper suggested numerous applications. Mr. Bibby 
stated, in answer so a suggestion, that he had made numerous experiments with asa- 

Ara jun°e, r i8 P 76 arm '} Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting, 279 

foetida, with variable results, but found that by the addition of an equal amount of 
sugar of milk a permanent powder could be produced. 

The Professor remarked he could well see the cause of the variable results, 
which must be due to the variable composition of commercial asafcetida, which, 
according to Prof. Dymock, of Bombay (see "Amer. Jour. Phar." 1875, 320), is 
generally more or less adulterated. 

Prof. Remington thought it advisable to find out the smallest possible amount of 
sugar of milk required in the case of each drug. 

Mr. Bibby thought in preparing emulsions with these powders a mortar should 
be used, mere agitation in a vial not always yielding good results. 

William Mclntyre read a paper on a wafer machine and press, (see page 267) 
illustrating its use in actual practice. All the apparatus necessary for making one 
size of wafer disks and capsules had cost $3. 

Prof. Maisch showed a handkerchief with initials marked thereon eleven months 
ago, by placing upon it the lower surface of a leaf of Magnolia glauca and tracing 
the letters upon the upper surface with a pointed instrument, using some pressure ; 
he stated that his attention had been called to this property by C. E. Hornberger, a 
member of the last graduating class. The handkerchief exhibited had been 
frequently washed, without affecting the marking. 

A. P. Brown exhibited an inhaler for gaseous chloride of ammonium, which has 
been devised by H. P. Reynolds, of Plainfield, N. J., and may be prepared from an 
ordinary wide-mouth bottle, closed with a tightly fitting perforated cork, so as to 
admit of two tubes. One of these is a glass syringe tube, passing nearly to the 
bottom and filled with small pieces of sponge 5 while the longer, which is bent to 
be applied to the mouth, may have its origin just below the bottom of the cork. 
When it is wanted for use, the cork is removed, and after placing three or four 
drops of chemically pure muriatic acid in the bottle, and the same quantity of strong 
aqua ammonia? in the syringe tube containing the sponge, the mouth-piece of the 
inhaling tube is taken between the lips for the purpose of inhalation. In drawing 
air through the apparatus, the ammonia combines with the muriatic acid, and the 
air becomes charged with vapors of ammonium chloride. 

Prof. Remington described a convenient way of inhaling substances which are 
usually added to hot water — a rubber tube is slipped over the small end of a funnel 
which is placed as a cover over a tin vessel containing the water and drug. 

Prof. Maisch exhibited the seeds of Paullinia sorbilis, which are used in South 
America in the preparation of guarana ; Strassburg turpentine, Terebinthina argen- 
toratensis from Abies pectinata, which is similar in appearance to Canada balsam, 
and used in Europe for similar purposes ; Dita bark from Echites scholaris, which 
has attracted some attention as a febrifuge ; the rind of the fruit of Garcinia mangos- 
tana, recommended as a reliable remedy in dysentery ; Goa powder, which contains 
much chrysophanic acid, and is stated to be very useful as an external application in 
ringworm and other skin diseases $ the fruit of Myrcia acris, resembling allspice, 
but more oblong in shape, which is used with the leaves of the same plant in the 
distillation of bay-rum ; a white crystalline saccharine principle, which has been 
isolated by Prof. E. S Wayne, from American bitter-sweet, the bark of Celastru 
scandens, and the highly-aromatic volatile oil of spice-berry, the fruit of Benzoin. 

Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations, { Am jJne% P 7 6 arm * 

A. P. Brown exhibited aromatic waters of cinnamon, peppermint and spearmint, 
and Edward C. Jones samples of cinnamon water, made by various processes, and 
desired information as to how many pharmacists prepared the water from Ceylon 
cinnamon, and to what extent cassia was used. A. P. Brown having recently given 
some attention to this subject, thought but few used Ceylon cinnamon. 

This being the last regular meeting of the session, and it being the opinion of the 
members that it would be profitable to still continue them, a motion was adopted to 
adjourn to meet upon the 20th day of June. 

William McIntyre, Registrar. 


Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. — Since the close of the examination, 
in March last, the building has been thoroughly renovated, and a number of per- 
manent and temporary improvements have been added, the latter being more 
particularly intended for the convenience of the visiting pharmacists from this and 
foreign countries, who are expected to visit Philadelphia during the next four or five 
months. Adjoining the laboratory, a one-story brick building has been erected 
some months ago, with the view of accommodating Prof. Maisch, and furnishing 
additional conveniences for his labors in connection with the "Journal" and as Secre- 
tary of the American Pharmaceutical Association 5 it is likewise used as an 
analytical balance room. Amongst the alterations made in the laboratory may be 
mentioned the removal of the fume-closet to an adjoining building, recently put 
up. The old cabinet cases have been taken from the meeting room to furnish 
better accommodations for the private collections of the professors. The cabinet 
of Materia Medica and Chemistry has been entirely refitted by the curator, Pro- 
fessor Remington, and now presents not only a very attractive appearance, but, 
what is of greater importance, it contains many interesting and valuable specimens 
carefully preserved. The general herbarium of the College, the nucleus of which 
consists of the valuable collection presented, many years ago, by the late Elias 
Durand, has been classified and partly catalogued ; while the herbarium recently 
presented by Daniel B. Smith (" Amer. Pharm. Jour.," 1875, P- 5 I 4-)> has been 
arranged in the cases provided for it. The library has been put in thorough order 
by the librarian, T. S. Wiegand, and now offers ready convenience for consulting 
it. The alterations in the lecture rooms consist mainly of improvements in 
the means of ventilation, and additional facilities for illustrating the lectures. 

Amongst the transient preparations is to be mentioned the erection of a tem- 
porary building, in which the closets and wash-baisins, desirable for the convenience 
of visitors, have been placed. 

The formal opening of the renovated building took place on the evening of 
May 23, when, in response to the invitation of the hall committee, a large number 
of members, visiting pharmacists and other guests, with their ladies, assembled in 
the lower hall, which appeared like a tropical garden, from the numerous plants 

Am jJne U , r i8 P 7 6 ann ' \ Pharmaceutical Colleges and Associations, 28 1 

judiciously arranged therein. Most of the plants, which were kindly loaned for 
the occasion from the hot-house of Prof. Geo. B. Wood, represented some officinal 
articles, such as sago, sugar, coffee, tea, cinnamon, &c. The entrance hall had 
been handsomely decorated with the flags of the nations represented in the inter- 
national exposition, a glass tablet, with the following greeting, being suspended 
from an arch in the centre of the hall : 

*' Collegium Pharmaceutic™ Philadelphiense arti Medicamentari^e 
operam dantes ubicumque gentium salutat." 

In the lower lecture room the company was treated to an exhibition with the 
College stereopticon, the oxy-hydrogen lamp being, for the evening, in charge of 
Mr. D. S. Homan, of the Franklin Institute ; J)r. J. G. Hunt exhibiting a number 
of Microscopical preparations ; Mr. Charles Bullock following with an exhibition 
of American and foreign sceneries. The company, afterwards, repaired to the 
lower hall, where an acceptable collation of ice cream and cakes had been pro- 
vided, and small bouquets were handed to those present. After further social 
intercourse, the company dispersed. 

Great credit is due to the hall committee (Messrs. C. Bullock, T. S. Wiegand 
and Wm. Bakes) for the manner in which the improvements were made, and the 
very satisfactory arrangements for this opening reception. 

The Alumni Association of the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy 
has elected the following officers for the ensuing year : Edward S. Kelly, Presi- 
dent ; Chas. M. Howe and James S. Whall, Vice-Presidents; S. A. D. Sheppard, 
Secretary ; Jas. C. Lowd, Treasurer, and Wm. W. Bartlett, auditor. 

At the annual supper, at the Revere House, on April ai, more than eighty were 
present ; speeches were made, and harmony and good feeling prevailed until the 
hour of separation arrived. 

The New Jersey Pharmaceutical Association held its sixth annual meet- 
ing in the assembly room of Masonic Hall, New Brunswick, on Wednesday, May 
17th, 1876. The meeting was called to order by the President, J. L. DelaCour, 
and, after delivering his annual address, an election for officers for the ensuing year 
was held with the following result : President, H. P. Reynolds, of Plainfield ; 
Vice-Presidents, A. S. White, Mount Holly, and Wm. M. Townley, Newark ; 
Treasurer, Wm. Rust, New Brunswick ; Recording Secretary, A. P. Brown, 
Camden; Corresponding Secretary, C. B. Smith, Newark; Standing Committee, 
G. A. Mangold, Trenton ; J. H. Van Deursen, New Brunswick; Charles Holz- 
hauer, Newark ; R. J. Shaw, Plainfield. 

On account of the Centennial Exposition, in Philadelphia, the local committee 
were unable to prepare an exhibition of drugs, but invitations were extended to 
visit the hard and soft rubber factories, the brussels carpet factory and the hosiery 
factory, and, after the morning session, the members, with their ladies, spent about 
two hours in examining the above-named places. 

The next annual meeting will be held in Newark, and the Association decided 
not to hold any summer meeting, and not to issue any proceedings this year. 



Am. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

Cincinnati College of Pharmagy. — The third pharmaceutical meeting was 
held May 10th, F. L. Eaton in the chair. After the approval of the minutes, the 
following donations were made to the cabinet. From H. F. Reum, select specimens 
of Ceylon cinnamon, cassia lignea and cassia barks, from Saigon, Batavia, China 
and Java. Mr. Reum, in his remarks, criticized, very severely, the substitution of 
the cassia bark for the real Ceylon cinnamon, when prescribed. 

Prof. Wayne presented the two alkaloids of veratrum viride, veratroidia 1 and 
jervia ; also arbutin, prepared from uva ursi 5 the oils of stramonium and lobelia 
seeds, the root of the osage orange and the crystallizable resin of the fluid extract of 

The Professor also submitted a formula for New Orleans mead, which he had 
used for years, and the product of which had always met with a readv sale. It is 
as follows : eight ounces each of sarsaparilla, liquorice root, ginger and cassia 
barks, two ounces of cloves and three ounces of coriander, suitably cut and bruised, 
are boiled for fifteen minutes, in eight gals, water, allowed to cool and settle, and then 
strained through flannel. To this is added, in the fountain, i| gal. syrup, ^ gal. 
honey, four ounces each of tincture of ginger and solution of citric acid, and^ 
afterwards, sufficient water to make ten gallons, when it is charged with carbonic 
acid gas. 

At the next meeting, Prof. Judge will read a paper on dilute phosphoric acid, and 
Prof. Fennel one on a new series of alums. 

The board of trustees having, at their last meeting, unanimously elected Prof. 
Wayne to the degree of Doctor in Pharmacy, the President, at this meeting, con- 
ferred the degree and presented the diploma. Prof. Wayne, in receiving this 
unsolicited honor, responded in appropriate terms. 

The Pharmaceutical Association of the Province of Quebec— At the 
Spring examination, fourteen candidates presented themselves for the degree of 
Certified Clerk, and two for the degree of Licentiate in Pharmacy, six were rejected 
in the minor and one in the major examination. 

This Association is the sole examining and licensing body in the province, being 
incorporated by act of parliament. In order to furnish instruction by lectures, the 
association has organized a College of Pharmacy (see "Amer. Jour. Phar." 1875, 
p. 427), which institution has not the power to license. 


The Sanitary Condition of Philadelphia is of general interest during the 
present year, when many visitors will be attracted to this city by the International 
Exposition, and reliable information on this subject will for this reason be welcome 
to all contemplating to view the grand collection of the products of nature and of 

1 Veratroidia, according to Mr. Bullock's recent investigations (see April No., p. 153), is merely jtrvia, 
contaminated with resin.— Editor Amer. Joxtr Pharm. 

Am. Jeur. Pharm. \ 
May, 1876. j 


art and science from all parts of the globe. The following communication will 
furnish this information : 

United States Centennial Commission— International Exhibition, 1876, Philadelphia— Bureau of 
Medical Service. — Owing to the very large number of persons who contemplate a visit to Philadelphia 
during the coming summer, it seems important that the utmost publicity should be given to all facts bear- 
ing on the sanitary condition of the city. 

The following statistics, which have been obtained from the most authentic sources accessible, repre- 
sent the mortality in some of the chief cities of the world during the past four or five years : 

Number of Years. 

Average Population. 

Average Total 

Average Death Rate 
per Thousand. 










9 50, 000 















While thus showing an average rate of mortality more favorable than that found in any other city con- 
taining over 500,000 inhabitants, Philadelphia has recently (1874) attained a degree of healthfulness 
almost unparalleled, viz., with a population at that time of 775,000, the number of deaths was but 14.966, 
giving a death rate of only 19*3 per thousand. These very favorable results are largely due to the abun- 
dant and cheap water-supply, and to the opportunities given, even to the poorest citizens, for the enjoy- 
ment of pure country air in the great Fairmount Park, which contains 2,991 acres. The extent to which 
this is valued by the citizens may be inferred from the fact that during the year 1875, the Park was vis- 
ited by over eleven million persons. 

The most powerful influence of all, however, is the absence of that overcrowding of the population, 
which is the most fruitful source of sickness and death in many quarters of nearly all other large cities. 
This will be more clearly comprehended when it is remembered that the 817,488 inhabitants of Philadel- 
phia are spread over an area of 129% square miles, which are traversed by more than one thousand miles 
of streets and roads; and that the city contains, in addition to other kinds of buiidings, 143,000 dwelling- 
houses occupied by families, — a number exceeding by over 40,000 that of any other city in America. 

The climate of Philadelphia is also, on the whole, a favorable one, although presenting many of the 
peculiarities common to inland localities. The mean annual temperature of the last ten years is 53 73 
Fahrenheit; the average annual rain-fall is about forty-five inches. 

The following table exhibits the mean temperature of each month for the past ten years, showing that 
the range is far less extreme than is found in many other less favorably situated localities : 

Mean Temperature [Fahrenheit) of Each Month during the Past Ten Tears. 

January 32-72° F. 

February 33' 12 " 

March 39-16 " 

A Pril 53*36 " 

May 63-24° F. 

June 73-54 " 

July 78 - 74 " 

August 75'92 " 

September 67*72° F» 

October 5603 " 

November 43'34 " 

December 33'9 2 " 

It is thus seen that only during the months of June, July and August does the mean temperature rise to- 
a high point. During this period there are very rarely any prevailing epidemic diseases ; and the chief 
mortality occurs among children, especially among the poorer classes. 

The health of Philadelphia at present is unusually good. Timely efforts have been made to secure an 
abundant water-supply to meet the great increase in the demand which must be expected this summer as 
compared with previous years. Constant watchfulness will be exercised by the authorities to maintain 
cleanliness, and to avoid or remove every possible cause of disease. 



Am. Jour. Pharm: 
June, 1876. 

Within the Exhibition grounds a rigid sanitary inspection will be maintained, under the control of the 
Bureau of Medical Service ; and thus a guarantee will be afforded that no cause of infection or disease 
will be allowed to occur through neglect of this important duty. 

The object of this circular has been to call attention to the unusual sanitary advantages of Philadel- 
phia, and to the preparations which have been made to insure the highest possible degree of healthfulness 
during the approaching Exhibition season. It is proposed to issue at certain intervals other circulars, 
announcing in an official and accurate manner the sanitary condition of the city, so that entire security 
may be felt by all who desire to visit the Centennial International Exhibition. 

jjth April, 1876. WILLIAM PEPPER, M.D., Medical Director. 

Solution of Tartrate of Sodium has, to some extent, replaced the citrate of 
magnesium as a laxative medicine. The various formulas which have been pub- 
lished direct the combination of tartaric acid with crystallized carbonate of sodium, 
a salt which, on exposure to the air, readily parts with a considerable proportion of 
its water of crystallization, and is therefore with difficulty kept of a uniform com- 
position, unless it be dehydrated. In view of this, it is rather surprising that the 
employment of the more stable and uniform bicarbonate of sodium has not been 
proposed heretofore. Mr. H. M. Wilder informs us that he has made the solution 
for some time, by combining sod. bicarb, £vss with acid, tartar, ^ivss, using four 
pints of water for dissolving them. Into each bottle is put i£ fluidounces of simple 
syrup, 2 or 3 drops of spirit of lemon, the bottle is filled with the solution of sodium 
tartrate, after which 45 grs. of crystallized citric acid are added, and the bottle corked. 

The taste of this solution differs from that of magnesium citrate, and appears to 
be more acceptable to the majority of patients, while in laxative effects the two are 
probably about alike. 

American Chemical Society. — At the " Centennial of Chemistry," celebrated 
by a number of American chemists at Northumberland, Pa., August 1st, 1874, it 
was proposed to form a national chemical society. The proposition was not then 
favorably entertained \ the establishment of a chemical section in connection with 
the American Association for the Advancement of Science, appeared to the ma- 
jority of those present to meet all necessities. The advantages of a national chemi- 
cal society, however, have been so apparent in England, France and Germany that 
the proposition of reveral New York chemists to form a similar society in this coun- 
try met with such a hearty response from all sections of the United States, that dur- 
ing the past month the American Chemical Society was established with 53 resi- 
dent (within a radius of thirty miles from New York) and 80 non-resident members. 
The officers for the current year are : Prof. J. W. Draper, New York, President ; 
j. L. Smith, Kentucky, F. A. Genth, Pennsylvania, E. W. Hilgard, California, 
J. W. Mallet, Virginia, C. F. Chandler, New York, and Henry Morton, New 
Jersey, Vice Presidents ; George F. Barker, Pennsylvania, Corresponding Secretary ; 
Isidor Walz, New York, Recording Secretary ; H. M. Habirshaw, New York, 
Treasurer, and P. Casamajor, New York, Librarian. 

The objects of the Society are the encouragement and advancement of chemistry 
in all its branches, in furtherance of which monthly meetings will be held in the 
city of New York on the first Thursday of every month, and it is contemplated to 
hold one meeting in each year outside of New York city, at such a time and in such 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
June, 1876. J 

Reviews, etc. 


a place as to make attendance on the part of non-resident members more convenient 
and representative. It is likely that the first one of these meetings will be held in 
Philadelphia during the approaching summer. 

Chemists desirous of becoming members of the American Chemical Society, 
should address the Committee on Nominations, Post-office box, 1,396, New York 

The Liebig Monument. — We learn from German papers that the collections 
for the proposed Liebig Monument amount thus far to 140,000 marks (nearly 
$35,000). It is intended to erect the monument upon the Dult Place in Munich,, 
but neither has the artist been selected, nor has a design been formally adopted. 

Murderous Attack in a Laboratory. — Prof. Otto, of the Polytechnic School 
at Brunswick, Germany, was attacked by an employee at the pharmaceutical and 
chemical laboratory and seriously wounded, toward evening of April zzd. It ap- 
pears that the professor had censured the man for carelessly breaking an apparatus^ 
and was afterwards assaulted by him with some blunt instrument, probably a pestle,, 
receiving eight wounds about the head. Fortunately the wounds, although very 
serious, are not absolutely dangerous, and there is hope of the ultimate recovery of 
Prof. Otto. The perpetrator of the dastardly act was soon after arrested, and 
lodged in prison, where he put at end to his life by hanging. 


C. H. Hobbs" Botanical T ?xt-book of common, local, English, Botanical and Pharmaco- 
pceial Names, arranged in alphabetical order, of most of the crude Vegetable 
Drugs, &c., in common use ; their Properties, Productions and Uses in an ab- 
breviated form. Especially designed as a reference-book for Druggists and 
Apothecaries. In Three Parts. Compiled and published by Chas. E. Hobbs,. 
Boston: 1876. Large 8vo, pp. 271. Price $3.50. 

The very lengthy title of this book is almost sufficient to give a synopsis of its 
contents. The first part, which is headed English, contains three columns, re- 
spectively marked Common, English and Botanical, the latter containing the botanical 
names of the plants, and the second column the English names more generally em- 
ployed, while the first column aims at giving all the English names of more local 
use, and including likewise the names found in the second column. We fully re- 
cognize the difficulty of such an arrangement, and it could hardly be otherwise but 
that discrepancies should be found here ; thus for instance for the common name of 
acorn the English Fruit of the oak is given, while for Anise, common the English 
Anise [Seed is used. We rather expected the second column to contain the defi- 
nition of the word of the first column, an idea which is really carried out in some 
portions of the first part, like under the head of oils, where the second column usu- 
ally defines the nature of the oil, whether fixed, expressed, distilled, &c, and the 
part of the plant from which it is obtained. 


Reviews, etc. 

Ana. Jour. Pharm. 
June, 1876. 

The second part, entitled Botanical, likewise contains three columns, in the first 
of which the botanical names and some of their synonyms are given in alphabetical 
order; in the second the common English names, and in the third the part of the 
plant employed and its medicinal properties. The latter portion is given abbreviated 
and an explanatory table of the abbreviations used precedes the second part. 

The third part, headed Pharmacopceial, has in the first column the names as 
officinal in the United States, British or German pharmacopoeias, or as still occasion- 
ally employed. In the second and third columns are found the corresponding com- 
mon and botanical name. The first column may serve to some extent for compar- 
ing the system of nomenclature adopted by the three pharmacopoeias, as for instance 
Gentiana, Gentianse radix and Radix Gentiana; are the names of the U. S., Br. and 
Ger. pharmacopoeias indicating the same drug, viz., the root of Gentiana lutea. 

An appendix contains an alphabetical list of the German names of the crude 
vegetable substances officinal in the German pharmacopaeia, a second column giving 
the Latin officinal and a third column the botanical name. 

The mechanical part of the work is satisfactory. The types are clear, and al- 
though we have observed occasional misspelling, we have not observed any incor- 

We have entered thus extensively into the arrangement and character of the 
work before us, because we believe it to be a very valuable one for druggists as well 
as pharmacists, the first part being perhaps the one of greatest practical value in de- 
termining the meaning of the numerous common names of mere local use, of which 
names not less than 8,000 are enumerated in the first column ; and yet full and com- 
plete as this list is, we have incidentally observed that one reference has been over- 
looked, and mention this here merely for the purpose of referring to an erroneous state- 
ment published twenty-one years ago which has remained uncorrected ever since. Hav- 
ing had occasion recently to refer to a communication by H. G. and L. B Hotchkiss 
in the "Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1855, p. 222, the statement attracted our attention that 
the weed most commonly found in peppermint plantations was " by some called 
broomweed, by others mare's tail (Hippuris vulgaris.)" The plant mentioned, 
however, is rather rare in this country and is newer found in mint plantations be- 
cause it is an aquatic plant; mare's tail is merely one of the numerous synonyms 
by which Erigeron Canadense is known in some localities (see "Amer. Jour. Phar.," 
1870, p. 121.) 

Jahresbericht uber die Fortschritte der Pharmacognosies Pharmacie und Toxicologie, 
bisher herausgegeben von Dr. A. Wiggers und Dr. A. Husemann, fortgesetzt 
von Dr. G. Dragendorff, ord. Prof, der Pharmacie in Dorpat. Neue Folge ; 9 
Jahrgang, 1874. Gottingen : Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht's Verlag, 1875. 8vo, pp. 

Annual report on the Progress of Pharmacognosy, Pharmacy and Toxicology, for 

We have seen this annual report only recently, through the kindness of Mr. 
Wilder, else it should have received an earlier notice. After the publication of the 
report for 1873, tne venerable Prof. Wiggers declined its further preparation, owing 
to his advanced age, and Prof. Husemann found his time so much occupied as to 

Am Jour. Pharm.l 
June, 1876. J 

Reviews, etc. 


be unable to contribute the compilation of the toxicological researches. Prof. Dra- 
gendorff then agreed to furnish the report, and although the time for accomplishing 
this has been very limited, he has, aided by Messrs. E. Masing, E. Johannson, 
Nentwich and Prof. Morel, succeeded in producing a volume which is in every way 
a worthy successor of the long series of thirty volumes edited by Prof. Wiggers. 

The arrangement of matter remains nearly unaltered, and the selections are as 
complete and the references to the various journals as full and accurate as to leave 
nothing to desire. We confess, however, to have been somewhat surprised in find- 
ing enumerated in the bibliographical list a work on new-school remedies, by the 
notorious Dr. Paine, which would not have received the same compliment on this 
side of the Atlantic. 

Twelfth Annual Report of the Alumni Association of the Philadelphia College of Phar- 
macy. 1876. 8vo, pp. 46. 

The pamphlet contains Prof. Remington 1 * Valedictory Address, Mr. Eberle's 
Annual Address, the President's Report, an account of the Annual Reception in 
March last, Minutes of the Meetings of the Association and of the Executive 
Board, etc. We learn from the minutes that, in addition to the Alumni prizes 
mentioned on page 186 of our April number, a silver medal has been awarded by 
the Executive Board to Mr. Henry Schroeder, of Chicago, besides the certificate of 
proficiency received by him in March 5 also, a certificate of proficiency in chemistry 
to Mr. J. C. Martin, of Allegheny City. 


Antoine Jerome Balard, member of the Paris Academy of Sciences and 
Professor of Chemistry at the College de France, died in Paris, last April, after 
a short illness, which, for several months, had been preceded by a gradually-in- 
creasing debility. Balard was born at Montpellier in 1802, received a thorough 
pharmaceutical education, and was afterwards attached, as Preparateur de Chimie, 
to the School of Pharmacy and Faculty of Sciences of his native city. While labor- 
ing in this capacity, he liberated from the ashes of seaweed a new element, to which 
he gave the name of bromine. The essay announcing this discovery was published 
in 1826, and contained extended researches by which the young discoverer proved 
its chemical analogy to the previously -discovered elements, chlorine and iodine. 
This discovery was made only a short period after the opposition against the ele- 
mentary nature of chlorine had ceased ; its effect upon the alkalies and alkaline 
earths, however, could not be harmonized with existing theories, until in 1834 Bal- 
ard announced the discovery of hypochlorous acid, and explained the chorinated com- 
pounds mentioned as mixtures of chlorides and hypochlorites. Amongst Balard's 
researches which were destined to have an important bearing upon industrial arts, 
should be mentioned yet his investigations upon the salts of sea-water, with a view 
of utilizing, besides the sodium, also the potassium salts. 



Am. Jour. Pharm 
June, 1876. 

The gradual development of the theories relating to organic chemistry was ma- 
terially aided by Balard, among the most important of his discoveries in this direc- 
tion being the preparation (1841) from binoxalate of ammonium, of oxamic acid, 
the representative of the limited class of amin acids, and (1844) ^ e separation of 
polymeric compounds of amylene, while attempting to prepare the latter from amylic 

In 1842, he was called to Paris to fill the chair of Chemistry in the Faculty of 
Sciences, formerly occupied by Thenard, and since 1851 he labored in a like capaci- 
ty at the College de France. 

Balard's researches were characterized by great exactness a»d minuteness, leaving 
to others very little, if anything, to correct. Amongst the pharmacists whose sci- 
entific labors have, directly or indirectly, created great industrial pursuits, his name 
stands among the first ranks. He was an honor to his profession and to the science 
to which his inclinations were directed ; kind of disposition and free from envy or 
jealousy, he was always ready with valuable advice to aid the investigations of others, 

Michael Donovan, M. R. I. A., died in Dublin, March 2.7th, at the advanced 
age of 85 years. His name is well known to American pharmacists as the origi- 
nator, in 1839, °f Donovan's Solution, the Liquor Arsenici et Hydrargyri Iodidi P 
of the "U. S. Pharmacopoeia." In former years, Mr. Donovan paid much attention 
to electricity and electro-chemistry, but at a later period was almost exclusively de- 
voted to pharmacy, contributing quite a number of papers to several journals, several 
of which were reproduced in the earlier volumes of this journal. Amongst the 
more recent ones may be mentioned the " Historical sketch of the dismemberment 
of pharmacy from physic" (1868), " On the process for preparing James' powder" 
(1869) and " On tincture of hyoscyamus " (1871). 

Dr. Jean Francjois Vleminckx died at Brussels, March, 17th, in the 76th 
year of his age. The deceased was widely known for his researches in hygiene,, 
and had labored for many years in the sanitary service of the Belgian army, in 
which service, at the time of his demise, he held the honorary position of Inspector- 
General. He was one of the founders and President of the Royal Academy of 
Medicine, since 1864 a member of the Chamber of Deputies, and held many other 
positions of trust and honor. 

Dr. J. S. Unzicker died at Cincinnati, April 18th, of apoplexy, aged 63 years- 
He was a native of Germany, but had been practising medicine in Cincinnati for 
many years. He was a member of the Cincinnati Academy of Medicine, and al- 
ways took a lively interest in the progress of pharmacy. 

Joseph N. Hendershott, a native of Bloomsburg, Pa., and during last winter 
a student at the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, was suddenly taken sick on the 
evening of the Commencement, March 14th, and died of typhoid fever on the 20th 
of the same month, aged 22 years. He was an active and promising student, and 
of a genial disposition. 



yuir y 1876. 



Though much has been said and written on this subject, still it does 
not seem to be exhausted yet, not long ago new suggestions having 
been made in that direction. Viewing this matter from a practical 
standpoint, it appears to me that we should not aim so much at the 
utmost gain of time in filtering and washing out precipitates, but 
rather at a more uniform good result of these operations. In accord- 
ance with this view, the following described apparatus will be found 
both convenient and effective enough to shorten the filtering process,, 
and the drying of the filter and its contents quite considerably. 

It is composed of Weil's filtering tube, and Scheibler's drop aspirator,, 
to which I have added a vacuum regulator. The filtering tube 
(recommended by Weil about 16 or 18 years ago) allows to filter 
under a pressure of 1 to 2 feet of water column, without any other 
support of the filter exeept the funnel itself. It allows, further, to 
filter into any kind of receptacle, which will be found a great conveni- 
ence. On the other hand, Scheibler's drop aspirator, used as a filter- 
ing pump, is by far the most perfect one in reference to the effect pro- 
duced by a given quantity of water, while its absolute effect is likewise 
very satisfactory for filtering purposes. The vacuum regulator is 
intended to prevent the rarefaction of air surpassing a certain degree. 

Before entering into a more detailed description of the whole ar- 
rangement, it may be well to make a few remarks about funnels and 

It has been laid down as a rule, that the sides of a funnel should 
have an angle of inclination of 60 degrees, in which case a filter, 
folded at right angles, will fit exactly into the funnel. I found that a 
filter adjusted into a funnel of a more acute angle offers remarkably 
greater security against breaking, provided, of course, the body of the 



Rapid Filtration 

J Am. Jour. Pharm. 
I July, 1876. 

funnel approaches as nearly a perfect cone as possible. In this case 
the transition of the cone into the tube is marked by a distinct 
angle, formed by the meeting of two straight lines. The opening at 
the bottom of the funnel must not be too large, its diameter should 
not surpass \ inch. 

A filter inserted into a funnel of 50 degrees, moistened and brought 
in perfect contact with the glass by pressing with the finger, will stand 
the pressure of a column of water ij feet high with safety. Filters 
supported by funnels of 30 degrees did not rupture by the weight of a 
column of water 3 feet high. Funnels over 50 degrees require the 
introduction of another but smaller paper filter, inside of which, and 
over-reaching it, the main filter is inserted. 

1. The filtering tube (see sketch C) consists of a wider upper part, 
carrying the funnel, and a lower narrower part, reaching almost to the 
bottom of the receptacle, and dipping into the filtered liquid. By 
srarefaction of the air in C> the filtered liquid is raised to a certain height, 
and therefrom results an increased pressure on the liquid in the funnel, 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 1 
July, 1876. / 

Rapid Filtration, 


and an accelerated filtration. The total length of the tube is 20 
inches, width of the upper part I J inches, its length 6 inches. The 
narrow side tube w, is I inch below the rim of C« Internal diameter 
of lower part j% inch, its length 14 inches. The lower part must be 
wide enough to allow air bubbles to rise or overcome the capillary 
attraction exerted by the sides of the tube upon the liquid. The tube 
is closed by a perforated India rubber cork, receiving the neck of the 
funnel, the opening of which reaches 1 or 2 inches below the little 
side tube m. The whole is held in position by a retort-stand, burette- 
holder or the like. 

2. The aspirator A. Upper part 1 inch in diameter and 6 inches 
long, the bottom forming a cone, connecting it with the lower part e, 
which has J inch internal diameter, and is 1 or more inches long. To 
this we attach a rubber tube/^ 5 or more feet long, and of the same 
internal diameter of J inch. The narrow side-tube h is 1 inch below 
the top of A- A perforated rubber cork, provided with a glass tube d, 
is inserted, as seen in the sketch. This tube has j\ inch internal 
diameter, extends downward about 3 inches, upward 1 or 2 inches. 
To this upper end a rubber tube g is attached, destined to supply the 
water for the aspirator, from an elevated vessel. If the flow of the 
water is so regulated (by means of a faucet or pinchcock) that it 
leaves tube d drop by drop, these drops falling into the narrow tube e y 
and its continuation f, perpendicularly beneath it, and, filling out its 
entire width, act the part of the piston in a pump, as, by their motion 
downwards, they carry with them the air enclosed in the tube between 
the single drops. In, this way the air in A> a s well as in any vessel 
connected with it by the communication tube is rarefied. The 
aspirator — equal lengths of time taken into consideration — draws less 
air if the drops follow each other slower, but then a higher effect is 
produced by a certain quantity of water, whilst if the drops fall 
quicker, the apparatus draws more air in that time, but the effect of 
the same quantity of water is diminished. Thus, 1 volume of 
water draws from 10 to 25 times its volume of air. 

3. The vacuum regulator B. After several experiments, I found a 
mercury valve of the construction shown in sketch B 5 working as well 
as could be wished. B has ij inch or more internal diameter and is 
about 6 inches long. The narrow side tubes k and / are opposite each 
other, and 1 inch below the rim. A good soft cork, free from holes, 


Rapid Filtration. 

f Am. Jour. Pharaoh 
\ July, 1876. 

is selected and perforated for the reception of tube i. The latter has- 
about -j\ inch internal diameter by 9 inches in length. Its lower end 
is cut off obliquely and provided with marks showing J inches, and 
beginning at the obtuse angle of the oblique cut. Tube B is filled up 
with mercury to a height of about 2 inches, then 2 inches of water 
are given on the top of this. The working of this valve is easily 
understood. By moving tube /, downwards or upwards, its lower end 
is, to a larger or smaller extent, immersed in the quicksilver, and if 
suction is applied to one of the side tubes, the other being connected 
with a closed vessel, the rarefaction of air in B ? and in the vessel con- 
nected with it, will reach a certain maximum degree, beyond which it 
cannot go ; air entering by way of tube /, and penetrating the mer- 
cury, it maintains that status in the apparatus to which the valve has 
been adjusted. If the end of tube i is cut off obliquely, as directed, 
the passage of the air through the quicksilver goes on more quiet, not 
so eruption-like, and the supernatant water prevents entirely the spat- 
tering of the metal. Several physical causes unite to give the gradua- 
tion on tube / only an empirical value. Under the circumstances 
named, f inch immersion of tube / will create in C a water-column of 
about 15 inches height. 

4. The connection of the single parts is effected by rubber tubing,, 
which need not be of the heaviest kind, as it is not exposed to any 
high external pressure. Aspirator and mercury valve are best mounted 
on a board (as seen in the sketch) and hung in a proper place on the 
wall, within reach of the hand. 

If this apparatus is to be constructed out of material on hand in 
every laboratory, we may take a chloride of calcium tube for the 
aspirator (Scheibler), and a large test-tube, or any wide-mouthed bot- 
tle, for the regulator, in which case the communication of the single 
parts is brought about by perforations in the corks. 

In case it should be preferred to make use of Bunserfs platinum 
funnels, we can proceed a little different from Bunsen's method, as 
such an exact fit as needed in high pressure is not wanted in our case. 
Divide a round piece of moderately thin platinum foil, about \\ inch 
in diameter, into two equal halves, and shape them into cones, the centre 
of the circle forming the apex of the cone. In funnels of less than 
60 degrees the sides overlap, in funnels of 60 degrees they meet 
exactly, but can even then be soldered together in one point about the 

Am. Jour. Pfearm.) 
July, 1876. J 

Hydrobr ornate of Quinia. 

middle of the cone by a grain of gold and a little borax. I cut off 
the point of the cone to create a small opening there, as I also per- 
forate the sides of the cone near its apex with a pin. 

Before leaving this subject, I will mention, with a few words, a 
most simple device which I have frequently used to promote filtration, 
and which consists of a piece of rubber or glass tubing, about 1 foot 
long, fastened into the tube of the funnel when the arrangement is 
ready for use. The internal diameter of this tube should be, at the 
most, of an inch. A tube similar in shape to Weil's filtering tube, 
but of different dimensions, looks more elegant and meets the objec- 
tion against bringing the filtered liquid in contact with India rubber. 
The upper wider part is 3 inches long, the lower narrow part is made 
of a barometer tube, and of the length first named. This little 
device meets moderate expectations very^well, and will often be found 
a good help. 

For washing out precipitates, on a larger scale, I use large funnels, 
half filled with coarse glass powder (glass heated to redness, thrown 
into cold water, powdered and the finest powder sifted off), on the 
evened surface of which is placed a round piece of filtering paper, in 
close contact with the sides of the funnel, for the reception of the 
precipitate. As a receptacle, I use a Woolf's bottle of proper size ; 
the filtering pump has an evacuation-tube of 12 feet length. 




The commercial " bromide of quinia " is not sufficiently soluble 
to make a concentrated solution for hypodermic use ; and having been 
requested by Prof. William T. Howard, to prepare such a solution, 
containing four grains in twenty minims, or ninety-six grains in each 
fluidounce, I, at first, availed myself of the reaction between quinia 
sulphate and calcium bromide, but not being satisfied with the process, 
I devised the following, which has since been used with success, and 
gives a satisfactory result : 

Take of Quinia sulphate, . 96 grains. 

Distilled water, 

Diluted sulphuric acid, 

Water of ammonia, and 

Hydrobromic acid, of each a sufficient quantity. 

Spirit of Nitrous Ether. 

f Am. Jour. Pharm, 
\ July, 1876. 

Dissolve the quinia sulphate in four fluidounces of distilled water, 
with sufficient diluted sulphuric acid. Mix one hundred and fifty 
minims of water of ammonia with four fluidounces of distilled water, 
add to the solution of quinia, constantly stirring, and transfer the 
whole to a muslin filter. The solution of ammonium sulphate, which 
passes through the filter, should be tested, and if the presence of 
quinia is indicated, add a little more water of ammonia to the whole of 
the solution and return it to the filter. 

After the quinia is drained, wash it with distilled water ; transfer 
the moist magma to a tared capsule and add, gradually, just sufficient 
hydrobromic acid to dissolve it. Evaporate the solution thus obtained 
on a water bath until it is reduced to a transparent mass, the weight 
of the quinia hydrobromate is thus ascertained, while, at the same 
time, any excess of hydrobromic acid is driven off. 

Lastly, dissolve the mass in a sufficient quantity of distilled water,, 
so that each fluid drachm shall contain twelve grains. The resulting 
solution will measure about one fluidounce. 
Baltimore, Md., June, 1876. 



The attention of every one connected with the drug trade must 
frequently have been directed to the various prices of the different 
spirits of nitrous ether thrown upon the market. Very often it can 
be purchased for less than the actual cost of the ingredients composing 
the U. S. P. article. 

In September, 1874, I examined several specimens of the commer- 
cial article, all of which proved to contain a large amount of water. 
The specific gravity of four samples were '890, '910, '930 and '940. 
The U. S. P. directs it to be -837. 

I believe it is generally understood that the substitution of water 
for alcohol, in making sweet spirit of nitre, governs the price of the 
article, and not the proportion of nitrous ether ; that the manufacturer 
who sells spirit of nitre at less than the cost of production for pure, 
decreases the alcoholic strength of his preparation proportionately, and 
for every cent of deduction takes out a cent's worth of alcohol and 
substitutes water in its place. What is the meaning of the terms 3^ 

A V^ST* } Spirit of Nitrous Ether. 295 

and 4f. so generally used ? The expressions are not recognized by 
the " Pharmacopoeia there is no authority upon this subject in any 
standard work with which I am acquainted. They are merely expres- 
sions, denoting that one is more largely adulterated with water than 
the other. An increase or decrease of etherial strength to any reason- 
able degree will not materially affect the cost of production, and, as 
far as I can learn, water in \i. nitre, and more water in explains 
their meaning. 

Undoubtedly, manufacturers accommodate themselves to circum- 
stances. A certain profit must be made. • The nitre is adulterated in 
accordance with the price at which it is sold. But, perhaps, spirit of 
nitrous ether may be adulterated fifty per cent, with water, and not 
be altered in regard to its etherial strength, as is well known, the 
distillate is much stronger than necessary, and is directed, by the U. S. 
P., to be mixed with alcohol to reduce its strength. Some think that 
water, substituted for alcohol, merely changes the form of the diluent ; 
that alcohol only serves the purpose of a diluent, and water will do 
as well and be inexpensive. I have no doubt many manufacturers 
conscientiously believe the therapeutical value of the article is not 
altered in the least by this subterfuge. Experiments, instituted by 
myself, with a view of finding if this really is the case, demonstrate, 
to my satisfaction, that the addition of water causes the spirit to 
decompose very much faster than is the case where the U. S. P. is 
adhered to. 

Nitrous ether, as is well known, rapidly disintegrates, forming acetic 
acid, nitric acid and other products. Alcohol exerts a preservative 
influence over it ; water hastens the change. I will not intrude upon 
the time of the reader by giving a full description of my experiments. 
I will only say that all the specimens examined, upon the market,, 
marked and 3f. spirit of nitrous ether, contained water and were 
strongly acid. Upon making the ether perfectly free from acid, 
distilling it in an atmosphere of carbonic acid, and diluting it with 
water and alcohol, in different proportions, I found that decomposition 
proceeded faster with the specimens containing water. The more 
water the more rapid the change. (See also Th^nard's results, in 
44 Gmelin's Chemistry.") 

I believe manufacturers should take the matter in hand, and discoun- 
tenance the substitution of even the smallest amount of water, and 

296 Powdered Drugs under the Microscope } Am jft u i r l8 P 7 6 arm - 

endeavor to make the preparations upon the market conform to the 
requirements of the u Pharmacopoeia." I have not spoken about the 
etherial strength of the commercial articles. This I believe to be 
unnecessary while the stuff is made as it is, for even if the full amount 
of nitrous ether is present when the article is sold, it will not long 
remain reliable while in contact with twenty-five or fifty per cent, of 
water. I do not wish to be understood as saying that every manufac- 
turer is making adulterated spirit of nitre. I believe, however, that 
one hundred pounds of the adulterated article is sold upon the market 
to one pound of pure. Let our retail druggists, over the country, test 
the preparations upon their shelves and judge for themselves, and let 
us endeavor, in some manner, to reform this disreputable business ; 
for such I must consider it until convinced that the U. S. P. is wrong 
in directing the specific gravity of spirit of nitrous ether to be '837. 



Assistant Professor of Botany in the University of Michigan. 
[Continued from page 246.) 
2. TAPIOCA (Fig. 2). 

A starch from the root of Manihot utilissima, a poisonous plant of 
the Spurge family, from South America and the West Indies. 

The grains are unusually compound, the two, sometimes three or 
four, grainlets of which are generally separated from each other in the 
preparation of the article for market. The grainlets differ consider- 
ably with the direction from which they are viewed. From the side, 
they appear rounded at one end, cut off at the other, and contain an 
apparently conical cavity, of which the nucleus is the apex and the flat 
side of the grain the base. Seen from the end, the grains appear cir- 
cular, with a round, central nucleus. The lay- 
ers are not distinct, though sometimes one or two 
can be made out. The diameter of the grains 
varies from itt. to 16//. 

The tapioca of the markets is in small, white 
masses, tough, slightly elastic, odorless, and with 
a slight taste. The grains of starch are distorted, 
more or less, by the heat used in the preparation 
of the article. A careful examination, however, 
will show many grains of the original form. 

1 Figures 2 and 3 are taken from Vogl's " Nahrungs- und Genussmittel " j the 
remainder are by Miss Reed. 

Fig. 2. Tapioca 
starch. 1 

Am jfc^ 7 h 6 arm - } Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. 


Several other species of Manihot are said to furnish a part of the 
tapioca in the trade. Their starch-grains are much like those just 
described, and, in the present state of our information, it is not practi- 
cable to distinguish them. 

Tapioca is said to be adulterated with potato, sago and wheat-starch. 
It is, itself, used as an adulterant of arrowroot. 

3. SAGO (Fig. 3). 

The starch from the stem of several species of palm-trees, gene- 
rally Sagus Rumphii. 

The grains are ovate or oval, with the margins sometimes slighlty 

concave. The rings are evident, and 
there is a round or star-shaped nucleus 
nearest the larger end. Many of the 
grains are singularly compound, consisting 
of a large grain, with one or more much 
smaller ones forming protuberances on it. 
In commercial specimens, the grainlets of 
the compound grain are usually separated 
from each other, and show only the flat- 
tened surfaces where they were in contact. The length of the grains 
is from jtt. to 24//., usually above 14^. 

Granulated sago is made into small, round masses by being passed 
through a sieve and subjected to heat. The masses are brownish in 
color. The starch-grains are but little altered by heat. 

Pearl sago is in larger, white, spherical masses, which in the course 
of preparation have been subjected to considerable heat, and afterwards 
bleached. The grains of starch in this case are swollen and distorted, 
and the nucleus is bulging. 

The principal adulteration of sago is by means of potato starch. 
From it a false sago is made, which resembles the real article very 
closely. The microscope will readily show the difference between 
them. Sago is employed as an adulterant of several other starches. 


The starch from the root- stock of Maranta arundinacea and, per- 
haps, other species of the same genus. 

It is a powder, with small scattered, irregular masses, of a dead- 

Fig. 3. Sago starch. 

298 Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. } Am jify r " I f 7 6 arm * 

white color, but glistening a little when examined closely, crackling 
slightly when rubbed, inodorous and insipid. 

The grains are simple, egg shaped, or oblong. The rings are fine 

and concentric or eccentric. The 
nucleus is large, shaped like a 
point, or a slit crossing the grain 
or two slits crossing each other. 
It is in the center, or nearer the 
larger end of the grain. The 
length of the grains is from itt. 
to 24//. 

Other varieties of arrowroot 
are described, from the European 
trade, though the writer has never 
seen them in the United States, 
with the exception of potato- 
arrowroot, which is occasionally 
found. It can be easily distin- 
guished by the examination of the starch-grains already described. 

Curcuma arrowroot is known by starch-grains which are rather larger 
than those of maranta, and which have the nucleus on the margin of 
the grain, frequently on a projecting point. Canna-arrowroot, or tous 
les mois y consists of starch-grains from 16//. to 50//., which are there- 
fore about twice as long as the grains of maranta. The larger grains 
are flat and more or less egg shaped, with the nucleus near the smaller 
end. The concentric lines are fine, regular and very numerous. 
Tacca or Tahiti arrowroot consists of grains \tt. to 15//. long, and 
shaped much like the grains of sago-starch. They are partly convex, 
partly with flat surfaces, rather hemispherical or pear-shaped. The 
nucleus is nearly central, and star-shaped. Arum or Portland arrowroot 
consists of very minute grains, something like those of Tacca, but 
only itt. to 8//. in diameter. 

The above can be considered in the light of commercial varieties. 
Fraudulent substitutions or adulterations of maranta with any of the 
cheaper starches may be expected. Potato, sago and tapioca starches 
are especially used for this purpose. 

5. AMYLUM (Fig. 5). 

Under this name, the "U. S. Pharmacopoeia" calls for wheat-starch, 

Fig. 4. Maranta. 

Am july l ; r i876 arm, } Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. 


that is, starch taken from the grain of the cultivated wheat. As a 
matter of practice, pharmacists usually sell corn- starch under this name. 
As the latter, when well prepared, is an excellent article, perhaps supe- 
rior to wheat-starch, there is no objection to this substitution, if it is 
well understood. 

Wheat-starch is in slender, brittle, irregular prisms, or in a powder. 
It is of a dead-white color, odorless and insipid. Like most starches, 
when rubbed between the fingers it crackles slightly. 

The grains are of two sizes, with but few intermediate. The larger 

ones are lens-shaped, and 
present only indistinct traces, 
if any, of nucleus and rings. 
When these do appear, the 
former is central, the latter 
concentric. They are from 
14//. to 16//. in diameter. 
The smaller grains are spher- 
ical, and usually less than 
3//. in diameter. 

The starch grains of rye 
and of barley are much like 
those of wheat, and it is 
sometimes desirable to dis- 
tinguish them. In rye, the 
larger grains are from 16//. 
to 21//. in diameter, and have frequently a distinct star-shaped nucleus, 
while the smaller are decidedly smaller than those of wheat. In bar- 
ley, the larger grains are about 11//. in diameter, with, often, rings and 
nucleus, while the smaller grains correspond closely to those of wheat. 

Wheat starch is a prominent constituent of "Imperial Granum," 
" Baby's Cereal Food," Ridge's u Cereal Food," and many similar 
proprietary substances. They are powders of no great complexity, 
and the determination of their constituents would be excellent prac- 
tice for the pharmacist inexperienced in this line of his work. 

6. CORN STARCH (Fig. 6). 

This starch is derived from the grain of corn, and comes in a form 
like that of wheat starch. Its powder, however, is glistening, while 
that of wheat is dull. 

Fig. 5. Wheat starch. 


Analysis of Face Lotions, 


| Am, j'oui Ph ut>) 

uly, 1876. 

The grains of starch are quite small, not surpassing 12//., and usu- 
ally lying between 6 and 9//. 
They are simple; the gen 
eral shape is spherical, but the 
sides are more or less flat- 
tened, and the grains mis- 
shapen by mutual pressure. 
In the starch from the cen- 
tral white and mealy part of 
the kernel of corn, the grains 
have more flat sides, due to 
the greater pressure ; while 
in the more hyaline outer 
part of the kernel, the starch 
grains are rounder. There 
are no rings visible. The 
nucleus is central, and is a 
round point in the fresh starch grain, star-shape in that which has been 

Corn starch is extensively sold under the names of " Maizena," 
Maizone," as well as that of amylum. 

Fig. 6. Corn starch. 



[From an Inaugural Essay.) 

The author selected Hagan's Magnolia Balm and Laird's Bloom of 
Youth for his analysis. Both are put up in opaque white glass bottles, 
and consist of a liquid precipitating a white sediment on standing, 
which is readily suspended again on shaking. 

One bottle of Hagan's Magnolia Balm was found to contain 3J 
iluidounces of liquid and 262 grains of insoluble portion. The clear 
filtrate was not acted upon by either sulphuretted hydrogen, sulphhy- 
drate, carbonate or phosphate of ammonium, and on evaporation left 
two drachms of a syrupy residue which was proven to be glycerin. 
The insoluble powder was dissolved in hydrochloric acid with effer- 
vescence. The solution was not precipitated by sulphuretted hydro- 
gen, but after having been rendered alkaline by ammonia, with which 

Am. Jour. Pharm. \ 
July, 1876. j 

Agave Americana. 


it yielded a clear solution, gave a white precipitate with sulphhydrate of 
ammonium. The precipitate was zinc, and the filtrate, when evap- 
orated and ignited, left no solid residue. Carbonic acid was the only 
acid found in the powder, which had been colored with J grain of 
carmine. The liquid was flavored with lavender and bergamot. 

One bottle of Laird's Bloom of Youth was found to contain 2J 
fluidounces of liquid and 212 grains of insoluble powder. Tested in. 
the usual manner, the liquid responded to the tests for small quantities 
of iron and calcium, and on evaporation left half a fluiddrachm of 
glycerin. The powder was dissolved in hydrochloric acid, efferves- 
cence being produced, and the solution treated with sulphuretted 
hydrogen, which produced a black precipitate, due to bismuth. The 
filtrate treated with ammonia and sulphhydrate of ammonium, gave a 
white precipitate, due to zinc, and the filtrate from it yielded, with am- 
monium carbonate, a white precipitate, due to calcium. 

Besides carbonic acid, the presence of hydrochloric acid was proven 
in the nitric acid solution by silver nitrate. 

A quantitative estimation of the insoluble portion yielded — 

31*204 grains of . . . . oxychloride of bismuth, 

149*792 « « carbonate of zinc, 

50*004 " u .... carbonate of calcium. 

Total 211*000 grains $ actual weight, 212 grains. 

The powder was colored with \ grain of carmine, and the liquid was 
perfumed with lemon and bergamot. 



[Abstract from an Inaugural Essay.) 

To the curious and interesting plants of the genus Agave, the name 
Century plant was given from the gardener's fable of its requiring one 
hundred years for them to produce their flowers. That they flower 
but once in a century is true, since they propagate their species by 
flowering but once, when they wither and die. 

Being indigenous to tropical America, and from the fact that they 
were for many years confounded with the genus Aloe, the plants of 
which, when young, may be mistaken for them, they have received the 
general appellation —American Aloe. 


Agave Americana, 

f Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ July, 1876. 

The generic name " altered from the Greek, dyauoz, wonderful, is 
not inappropriate as applied to A. Americana " (Gray), or to the A. 
pulque, or Mexicana, which has for many centuries been known to the 
Mexicans as the Maguey, or tree of wonders. 

The term, " Sisal hemp," is more especially applied to the species 
Americana; Sisal, Yucatan being the principal port of exportation for 
the fibre or hemp prepared from the leaves. 

This evergreen multennial of the order Amaryllidaceae, produces 
from the crown of a very short cylindrical base a vast cluster of fleshy, 
stiff, oblong-lanceolate leaves, having short spines on the edges, and 
terminating in a strong black spine. The leaves are from 3 to 8 and 
even 10 feet in length, the first being the shortest, from 3 to 7 and 
even 15 inches in width, and 1 to 4 inches or more thick. 

After the growth of the plant has sufficiently advanced and nearly 
all the leaves have unfolded, there pushes forth from the center, with 
rapid growth, a gigantic flower-stalk, from 3 to 8 inches in diameter at 
the base, which, in Florida, reaches the height of from 15 to 30 feet 
within a few months. When this shoots up, it carries with it the 
small innermost leaves, which at regular intervals are produced as ap- 
pressed, lanceolate-pointed bracts. These bracts are from 4 to 6 inches 
apart on the lower part of the stalk, becoming closer together as it in- 
creases in height, until at the extreme top they quite adjoin each other. 

The upper third of the stalk is branched, each branch, or arm, 
being repeatedly divided into three branchlets, the branches becoming 
gradually shorter above, so that the inflorescence presents the form of 
a circular pyramid of perfect symmetry, each branchlet bearing a cluster 
of small, erect liliaceous flowers, of a greenish-yellow color. 

A surprising fact is, that the roots of so large a plant should be so 
few and small, being apparently insufficient to retain it in an upright 
position. They are cylindrical and wavy, \ to \ inch in thickness, 6 
to 24 inches long, having a thin, brownish epidermis, under which is 
a second thin tissue of a deep red color; the rest consisting of a bun- 
dle of strong white woody fibres, with little parenchyma. All the roots 
of a full grown plant will scarcely weigh 4 ounces. 

It is propagated by seeds and suckers, both being produced simul- 
taneously. It is viviparous, the seeds always germinating on the plant. 
The young plant, or " onion," as it is called, frequently grows 4 to 6 
inches high before dropping from the parent plant. Mr. E. C. Howe, 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
July, 1876. i 

Agave Americana. 


of Key West, Florida, informs me that he has counted as many as 
2,000 onions on a single plant ; the average number is 1,000. The 
suckers are comparatively few. 

The author is of the opinion that the Agaves generally are vivipar- 
ous, and states that on the island of Key West there are three rather 
marked varieties. First, the common green American aloe, with but 
few marginal spines ; 2d, the same, with narrower and more spinous 
leaf ; 3d, a very spinous variety, having a broader leaf than either, and 
a bright silvery-green color. John Ambercrombie, in U A Gardener's 
Pocket Dictionary,'' vol. iii, enumerates a variety having a gold-striped 
leaf. When young, the plants seem to be equally spinous, but in the 
course of development the spines on the common green variety gradu- 
ally disappear, until, when the plant has matured, the leaf margins are 
almost uninterrupted. The other varieties retain their spines. 

This august plant flowers in from 2 to 10,50 or more years, accord- 
ing to climate and soil in which grown, and attention received. Mr. 
Howe has, by careful culture, caused the flower-stalk to shoot up in 
two years from the time the young plant dropped from its parent. On 
Key West Island there is an area of about seven acres covered with 
A. Americana, growing in soft rock of oolitic formation, covered with 
a thin layer of recent humus. The plant is uncared for, and flowers 
in from 5 to 8 years. 

It usually requires about 8 months after the flower-stalk makes its 
first appearance for the plant to attain its full growth, immediately after 
which it begins to wither and soon dies, stem, leaves and roots. 

The author cites from "Amer. Journ. Sc. and A.," 1833, a letter 
from Henry Perrine, then U. S. Consul at Campeche, and the state- 
ment of M. Bazire, with which he concurs, in assuming the species 
yielding the pulque of Mexico to be distinct from A. Americana, which 
grows well in sandy or calcareous soil near the sea level. The differ- 
ences may, however, to a great extent be due to long-continued culti- 
vation, which may have caused the coarse fibres of the leaves to dis- 
appear under the effect of rich soil and genial temperature. 

A. Americana is indigenous to the intertropical region of America, 
and has been introduced into most sub-tropical and warm, temperate 
climes of the earth. It was brought to Key West by Mr. H. Perrine 
in 1838, and was then introduced to Indian Key, Cayo Largo and the 


Agave Americana. 

(Am Jour. Pharnu 
( July, 1876. 

mainland, where it grows as far north as lat. 28 . It grows also in 
Southwestern Texas and Southern New Mexico. 

Uses. — The growing plant is used for hedges ; the dried flower 
stems constitute a thatch, perfectly impervious to the heaviest rain,, 
and split longitudinally, the stem makes an excellent substitute for a 
razor-strop. But the most important part of the plant is the fibre of 
the leaf. This is rather coarse, silky-white, harsher and not quite so 
strong as manilla, but makes beautiful, clean, glossy cordage. The 
" yashqui," or prickless (common green) variety is most used for this 
purpose. The reason why such a comparatively small quantity of this 
excellent fibre has been thrown into the market, is because of there 
being, as yet, no ready means of separating the pulp from the fibre. 

The rude mode of bruising and steeping the leaves in water, and 
afterwards beating and shaking the pulpy matter off, is very slow and 
unsatisfactory. Dr. Mease tells us that in Yucatan it is prepared " by 
means of two sharp corners, made by hollowing out the ends of a 
wooden tool like a flat ruler ; the fleshy leaves are slit in two or three 
longitudinal strips, and the pulpy substance being scraped off, the 
fibrous material appears, which is then shaken loose, tied in a knot, 
and, when dried in the sun, is put up in bales for exportation." Seve- 
ral machines have been invented for separating the fibre ; the most 
efficient is one by Mr. G. D. Allen, of Key West, but he found much 
difficulty in ridding the leaf, in an expeditious manner, of a thin epi- 
dermis, which adheres closely on both sides. His idea was to express 
the juice by passing the leaves between steel rollers, ferment the juice 
for the 10 per cent, of alcohol which it will yield, place the expressed 
leaf in water for three or four days, dry,. shake off the pulp and utilize 
it for manure, and clean the fibre for cordage. But, being too far from 
a market, he was compelled to abandon it, after having sustained heavy 
losses. One stalk, or plant, produces from 75 to 100 leaves fit for 
cutting, and thirty tons of green leaves make one ton of fibre. The 
fibre is finer and easier separated before the flowering stalk shoots up. 
" Great quantities are sent to Cuba to make coffee-bags, and since 
1825 numerous cargoes have been imported into the United States, and 
worked up into hawsers, running-rigging and small ropes " (Dr. Mease). 
Also, a coarse kind of 41 thread, twine and hammocks are made from 
the fibre. The ancient Mexicans made from it a coarse kind of paper,, 
and the Indians use it for oakum." (Chambers' Cyclop.) " The 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 1 
July, 1876. / 

Salicylic Acid, 

leaves are employed for scouring pewter, kitchen utensils, floors, etc.. 
In Algravia, when pasture is scarce, they are cut in thin, transverse 
slices, and fed to cattle " (Rees). On the island of Key West, in very 
dry season, cattle chew the leaves for thirst. Chickens eat the inner 
tender leaves with avidity. The juice has a bitter, mucilaginous, some- 
what nauseous taste, a turbid green color, and an odor that is truly the- 
41 stinkingest of the stinking kind." It passes very rapidly from vinous; 
to acetous fermentation ; yeast, raisins, whiskey, etc., have been used! 
with little retentive effect.. It seems all that is necessary to make " cen- 
tury plant " cultivation a very lucrative business is something to pro- 
duce rapid and permanent vinous fermentation. It ferments in about 
30 hours after expression. The average amount of juice yielded is 2 
ozs. per leaf, which, strained and evaporated to a thick consistence in 
the sun, may be made into cakes or balls with ashes, and used for 
washing ; they will lather with salt as well as fresh water. 

Dr. G. Perin, of the U. S. Army, has found the juice to be an ad- 
mirable remedy in scurvy, and it is much lauded by Mexican sailors as 
an antiscorbutic. The pulp, made into an ointment, was recommended 
by Lenoble as an epispastic, and has been used in veterinary practice 
as a rubefacient. Laxative, diuretic and emmenagogue properties have 
been attributed to the juice. 



(Read at the Pharmaceutical Meeting, held June 2,0th.) 

A strong solution of salicylic acid, for convenience in both dispensing 
and prescribing, has long been a desideratum, and until recently no 
practical way of overcoming the difficulty has been known. 

Salicylic acid itself is very sparingly soluble in cold water, and 
though readily dissolving by the aid of heat, nearly all separates on 
cooling. Its alcoholic solution is not adaptable to the purpose — for when 
diluted with water, the acid immediately separates. 

Various methods have been recommended for rendering the acid 
more soluble, namely : the use of various salts, such as sodium ortho- 
phosphate, calcium chloride, ammonium acetate, etc.; and also by dis- 
solving it in glycerin. None of these modes of procedure give a solution 
which contains more than \ per cent, salicylic acid. The desideratum 


Salicylic Acid, 

/ Am. Jour. Pharm. 
1 July, 1876. 

seems to be a concentrated solution which will bear dilution with water 
to any extent. Recently, a writer in the " Druggists' Circular," has 
recommended the use of sodium biborate and glycerin in the propor- 
tions of 1 part each of salicylic acid and the biborate to 16 parts glyce- 
rin. This gives a solution containing about 6 per cent, salicylic acid, 
and is freely miscible with water in all proportions. 

While recently experimenting with this formula, it occurred to the 
writer that probably a still stronger and more concentrated solution 
might be obtained by some slight modifications. After several experi- 
ments the following formula was adduced : 

Acid, salicylic, pur., ..... gij 

Sodii biborat., ....... 

Glycerinas, . . . . . . » q s. 

Mix the acid and borax with f3iv glycerin, heat gently until dissolved, 
then add q. s. glycerin to make the measure f^i. This solution con- 
tains 25 per cent, salicylic acid, and can be diluted with either glycerin, 
alcohol or water to any degree desired. 

The advantages of a concentrated solution of this description can 
scarcely be overestimated, as it affords a very convenient mode of both 
prescribing and dispensing salicylic acid. 

June 20th , 1876 



The addition of the phosphates of ammonium or sodium has been 
recommended to increase the solubility of salicylic acid in water, but 
these agents really amount to but very little, as a solvent of 1 part of 
the acid in three of either phosphate, and fifty parts (by weight) of 
water throws down a precipitate in less than twenty-four hours. An 
addition of two parts of sulphite of sodium to one of salicylic acid, in 
fifty parts of water, precipitates in a few hours. Borax in the propor- 
tion of two parts to one of salicylic acid, and fifty of water, precipitates 
slightly after twenty-four hours ; a solution of one part each of salicylic 
acid and borax, in five parts of glycerin and twenty-five of water, is 
permanent ; while the same proportion of borax, acid and glycerin, in 
fifty parts of water, will precipitate after twenty-four hours. A solu- 
tion of one part of acid to two of borax, in twelve parts of glycerin, 
made with heat, is permanent ; but when one part of this solution is 


rom Neues Repertorium, 1876, January. 

Am ji?y, r I | > 7 6 arm -} Rhubarb and Rheum Officinale. 307 

diluted with three parts of water, which makes it two parts of salicylic 
acid, four of borax, twenty-four of glycerin and ninety of water, a 
cloudiness appears in a few hours. One part of salicylic acid with one 
part of water of ammonia (20 ) forms with ten parts of water a perma- 
nent solution ; — this has a light-brownish color, a very faint odor of 
ammonia, a very distinct, sweet taste of the acid, and a slight acid 
reaction on litmus paper. 

Salicylic acid is soluble in ten times its weight of dilute alcohol, at a 
temperature of about 8o° F., in one and a half times its weight of 
alcohol (0*835 sp. gr.), and in twice its weight of sulphuric ether It is 
nearly insoluble in cold oil of turpentine, but hot turpentine dissolves 
about 5 per cent, of its weight. Its alcoholic solution has a decided 
acid reaction on litmus paper. An addition of one-fifth of 1 per cent, 
of salicylic acid to aqueous infusions will preserve them for weeks ; 
and the same proportion added to syrups made with fruit juices, while 
it will not arrest fermentation after such has set in, will prevent the 

The acid used in the above experiments was of Schering's make, and 
perfectly white and inodorous. 

When one part of salicylic acid and two parts of olive oil are heated 
together they form a homogenous mixture, admirably adapted for ap- 
plication to surfaces. The oil will separate to some extent on standing 
for a time, but agitation will easily combine it again. 



In recent years the French missionaries have gained the advantage 
of being able to seek for the rhubarb plant in Southeast Thibet, and 
already in 1863 the apostolic vicar of the district, Monseigneur Chau- 
veau, knew where to procure it. But it was in 1867 that Dabry, the 
French Consul at Hankow, was first able to forward to the Society of 
Acclimatization in Paris a living root, which, although it arrived in a 
very bad condition, was, through the care of the Secretary, Dr. Sou- 
beiran, grown in the garden of the Medical Faculty. The plant was 
at once recognized by Baillon as belonging to a new species which was 
described by him in the "Adansonia." 1 After the plant had flowered, 

1 "Adansonia," x (1868), 246. Descriptions appeared in this journal 1872, p. 546, 
and 1874, p. 1 54. 

308 Rhubarb and Rheum Officinale. { Am ji° y u , r ; 8 P 7 6 arm ' 

the description was supplemented by a figure in the " Proceedings of 
the Association Frangaise pour l'Avancement des Sciences," for 1871. 
It was also figured in the " Botanical Magazine," 1874, t. 6135. 

In the summer of 1874 the author received roots from the late Mr. 
Daniel Hanbury, and in 1875 the plant flowered for the first time in 
Germany in the garden of the Pharmaceutisches Institut of the Uni- 
versity of Strassburg, forming a stately, elegant plant. The flower 
stalk reached its full height about the 25th of May, when the flower,, 
which was at first almost horizontally drooping, appeared. The flower 
opened on the 27th of May, and on the 9th of June it stood upright,, 
and was in full bloom. In this case it was not, however, as described 
by Baillon, " pallide virescens," but white. Fruit had appeared on the 
20th of June, and by the 26th the flowering had nearly ended and the 
stalk had attained its greatest height, i\ metres. Most of the fruit was- 
ripe on the 20th of July, but the quantity in proportion to the number 
of flowers was small. Professor Fllickiger says the flower and fruit of 
Rheum officinale present no characters which distinguish it from other 
species of Rheum. 

At the author's request, Mr. Hanbury also distributed the Rheum 
officinale to Messrs. Rufus Usher & Sons, the owners of the large rhu- 
barb plantations at Bodicott, in Oxfordshire, the rhubarb cultivated 
there being probably R. Rhaponticum. Professor Fllickiger has now 
had an opportunity of comparing a root of R. officinale grown by him- 
self with one of the gardens of the Paris School of Pharmacy, supplied 
by Professor Planchon, and one obtained by Messrs. Usher & Sons,, 
and treated and dried in the same way as their rhubarb for the market 
is usually prepared. After this comparison, Professor Fluckiger is 
able to say that the root of R. officinale undoubtedly bears the characters 
of true Chinese rhubarb, and he thinks that with suitable treatment it 
would yield a product identical in external appearance. 

The first epidermis of the subterranean portion of R. officinale is re- 
markable for a very bright brown-red color ; the roots of other species,, 
at any rate those of R. Rhaponticum and R. Emodi, are only yellowish 
or yellow-brown. But what still more distinguishes R. officinale is the 
strong development of the root-stock, a large part of which occasion- 
ally projects conically from the ground, and is provided with not very 
numerous secondary roots of the thickness of a finger. Only the root- 
stock approaches the marbled structure of the true rhubarb; the sec- 

' Am j^y, r x8 P 7 6 arm *} Rhubarb and Rheum Officinale, 309 

ondary roots show the ordinary regular structure of this kind of axis, 
and no trace of the star-like spots or knots which give the drug its 
special appearance. 

Dr. Schmitz, of Halle, 1 was the first to point out the signification of 
these knots, and to show that the official rhubarb is a root stock, which 
for one year grows as a tuberous, thickened short stem, producing a 
flower-stalk that dies off" completely, and that on this short stem ap- 
peared numerous lateral buds that grow in a similar manner to the stem 
from which they are produced. The knots, however, which Dr. 
•Schmitz looks upon as starting from the medulla, appear, Professor 
Fluckiger thinks, to be related to the vascular bundles of the leaf. In 
consequence of the close arrangement of the leaves round the root- 
stock the irregular net-like interwoven fibres stand very close together, 
so that a tranverse section at the base of the leaf-stalks also give the 
characteristic circular distribution of the knots. The fibres increase in 
thickness independently, the inner portion of each separate knot con- 
sisting of parenchyma, which behaves as bark tissue, and is surrounded 
by a cambium ring. Outside the latter the fibre has the character of 
the woody portion (xylem) to the extent that well perfected vessels ap- 
pear in it. 

The knots are, however, by no means peculiar to the true officinal 
rhubarb, as they appear also in the so-called European rhubarbs. But 
there is this very great difference, that they are to be found much more 
plentifully and in a dense though irregularly arranged zone in the true 
officinal drug as well as in the root-stock of Rheum officinale. But a 
small number of isolated knots occur not unfrequently in the French or 
English rhubarbs. This fact led Schmitz to say that the root-stock of 
R. Emodi y Wallich, also possesses the characteristic markings of true 
Chinese rhubarb, a statement that the author thinks needs limitation. 
Especially, a remark connected with this, that probably a portion of 
the Himalaya rhubarb obtained in the country of R. Emodi, might be 
derived from that plant, is, Professor Fluckiger thinks, put beyond con- 
sideration by the fact that no Himalayan rhubarb occurs in European 
commerce. After careful consideration of the English and Indian 
markets, Fluckiger and Hanbury felt bound not to perpetuate the name 
*' Himalayan rhubarb " in their " Pharmacographia." Together with 
innumerable other drugs, probably the roots of R. Emodi and other 

1 Session of the Naturforscher Gesellchaft at Halle, Dec. ia, 1874. 

310 Rhubarb and Rheum Officinale. } Am j J u ?;, r - I 8 P 7 ^ rm * 

nearly allied species which grow in the Himalayas and Thibet, are to be 
met within the Indian bazaars, and once a couple of chests of such 
Himalayan rhubarb strayed to England. These, however, as well as 
authentic pieces of the root which were supplied by Wallich himself^ 
were deficient in the characters of true rhubarb. 1 Practically, therefore,, 
we have no varieties of rhubarb from the Himalayas. The brothers 
Schlagintweit, in their journey through the western part of the Hima- 
layas, met with Rheum Emodi, R. Moor cr oft 1 anum, Wall., and R. aus- 
trale, Don., but not with the collection or cultivation of true rhubarb. 2 

Similar with respect to the rhubarb of present commerce, opinions 
are not wanting that it should be considered different from the so-called 
Russian rhubarb. Thus, Berg is of opinion that this drug, at present 
disappeared from commerce, should be attributed to another plant which 
has sometimes been indicated as R. palmatum. To the author's knowl- 
edge, however, no Rheum palmatum cultivated in Europe has yielded 
roots resembling the true drug. But, in 1872, what appears to be a 
more nearly allied plant was collected by Przewalski in the highlands 
of Tangut, near the salt lake of Kokonor, in the province of Kansu 
(lat. 37 N., long. xoo° E.), and described by Maximowicz as Rheum 
palmatum, var. Tanguticum. According to the Russian botanist, this 
plant, which is now cultivated at Erfurt, in Germany, is the plant from 
which the once preferred Russian rhubarb was derived. Professor 
Fliickiger, however, thinks that a decisive opinion upon the relation of 
this Rheum Tanguticum to R. palmatum, at present cultivated in Eu- 
ropean gardens, on the one hand, and R. officinale on the other, is not 
at present possible; Tangut and Thibet lie so far asunder, that some 
experience in the propagation of these two plants is desirable. 

This uncertainty imparts interest to the notices of the origin and 
commercial routes of the rhubarb coming into European trade that have 
accumulated in the course of time. It appears probable that the Chi- 
nese, in the thousandth year of their annals, which is earlier than our 
chronology, employed rhubarb, and that very early caravans went from 
Central China to Western Asia, to Bokhara, for instance, so that it is 
possible that rhubarb spread westward in very early times. Acquaint- 
ance with it in India in ancient times cannot be determined, inasmuch 
as the Sanscrit language has no word to describe it. With the ques- 

1 Pereira " Elements Mat. Med., II," part i (1852), p. 492. 
2 "Annales des Sciences Naturelles (Botanique)," vol. vi, p. 334. 

Am jui^8 7 h 6" m } Rhubarb and Rheum Officinale. 3 1 1 

tion whether the Rha pontica, Rha coma or Rha of the later Latin 
writers was the drug of to-day, Professor Fluckiger does not deal ; but 
he thinks the expression Rheum barbarwn or barbaricum, first appearing 
in the sixth century, certainly relates to our drug, and this name ap- 
pears to have gradually supplanted Rha ponticum. Probably it is spoken 
of in the great geography of China, " Taithsing-i-thoring-tchi," when 
it is said that rhubarb, u tai* hoang," a product of the province of Si- 
ning-fu [east of the Sea of Koko-nor, already mentioned, in the pres- 
ent province of Kanzu], was admitted into Tangut during the rule of 
the dynasty of Tang as tribute from the Kouohtcheou district. This 
dynasty ruled from A.D. 618 till A.D. 905, just at the time when the 
name Rha barbarum was given to the drug in Europe. If there is not here 
strict evidence of the identity of the Chinese drug, Tai-hoang, /. e. y 
the great yellow [rootj, with Rha barbarum, the author thinks there is 
the highest probability. 

Esdrisi, the Arab geographer of the middle ages, in his u Geogra- 
phy," written in 11 54, and based on oral communications from travel- 
ers and the literature of the time, says of a certain district, " It is also 
there that the Chinese rhubarb grows, and the root is found there in 
abundance ; it is exported to many oriental and occidental countries." 
The district indicated was the mountains near Buthink, where, accord- 
ing to Esdrisi's account, the nardus (Nardostachys Jatamansi, D.C.)also 
grew, and the musk deer lived. Professor Sprenger refers the notice 
to the district lying between Hlassa and the Tengri-nor, the great 
mountain- lake of Northeast Thibet. 

w Reubarbe " is found entered among a large number of North 
Asiatic and Indian products in the customs list of St. Jean d'Acre 
(11 73 to 1 183). In a note on Marco Polo's Travels (Leipzig, 1855), 
Biirk speaks of entire loads which the Dschingiskhan troops met with 
at the conquest of the town of Lingtscheu (or Lant-scheu-feu), east of 
Sining in 1227, and which were very acceptable. Wilhelm von Ruys- 
brock (Rubruquis), who, in 1253 m tne sery i ce of King Ludwig, 
reached the court of the Mongol Khan Mangu, found there u reu- 
barba " in frequent use, though he did not reach further than the Kara- 
korum mountains. Twenty years later, the famous traveler Marco 
Polo pressed much further eastward, and especially among other places 
to Tangut, to which province so many notices on rhubarb refer it. In 
speaking of Suctur, the present province of Kanzu, Marco Polo says: 

3 1 2 Rhubarb and Rheum Officinale. { Am ^y%!^' 

144 La grant province general, ou ces trois provinces sont, est Tanqut. 
Et partoutes les montagnes de ces provinces se trouve le reobarbe in 
grant habondance. Et illec l'achatent les marchans et les portent par 
le monde." And further, " Ci diet de la cite* de Siguy : Siguy est une 

rtres noble cite et grande Et si y a si grant plante* de gent que 

H'on n'en puet savoir le nombre, .... mais ils ne sont point hommes 
•4'armes, ains sont marchans et gens moult soubtilz de tous mestiers. 
jEt si a en ceste cite moult de philosophies et moult de mires [me'di- 
<cins ?]. . . . Et es montaignes de ceste cite croist reobarbe et gin- 
tgembre aussi a grant plante." Professor Fluckiger does not think with 
5Pauthier, Marco Polo's editor and commentater, that by Siguy is to be 
^understood Su-tscheu in the province of Kiang-su, but Sining in the 
western part of the province of Schen-si. The doubt remains, how it 
was possible that ginger (gingembre) could occur together with rhu- 
barb ; but that rhubarb was wanting in the comparatively well-known 
province of Kiang-su is certain. 

As a Venetian, Marco Polo naturally turned his attention to rhu- 
barb. It is known that the Venetians as well as their neighbors the 
Genoese obtained supplies of Asiatic products not only through the 
Red Sea and across Egypt, but that their commercial routes from 
Central Asia found an exit also by the Sea of Azov or the Syrian 
coasts. In this way, possibly, rhubarb may have been supplied when 
the Sultan of Egypt interposed difficulties to transmit through his do- 

During the whole of the middle ages rhubarb does not appear to 
liave been a very important article of commerce. " Rabarbara " occurs 
rin the commercial police regulations of the city of Bruges in 1380, as 
an import from Italy. In 1445, rhubarb was imported into Dantzic from 
Riga, and it was one of the valuable drugs which, in 1497, were sought 
in the first doubling of the Cape of Good Hope. The Portuguese and 
Italians, who reached India at the commencement of the sixteenth 
century, obtained from Calicut and Cochin rhubarb that had been im- 
ported from China vid Malacca. 

Garcia de Orta gives further information respecting the commercial 
routes which the trade of that time (1563) struck out. It reached Or- 
muz in the Persian Gulf, made its way through Mesopotamia to Al- 
eppo and thence to Alexandria, where the Venetians took it in hand. 
Garcia states that rhubarb was supplied direct from Canton to Ormuz. 

Am 'j 3 ^\w™-} Rhubarb and Rheum Officinale, 313 

Like other oriental products, rhubarb appears to have been confined 
principally to land routes, hence the very high price of the drug. Ac- 
cording to Leber, in 1542, a pound of cloves cost 3 livres, pepper 15 
-sols., but rhubarb 18 livres 15 sols., whilst saffron was only 4 livres 10 
sols. In Ulm, in 1596, rhubarb was of higher value than opium. 

In the seventeenth century, also, according to a contemporary notice, 
rhubarb reached Europe by the same different routes w across the In- 
dian Ocean, through the Kingdom of Cascar (Kashgar), through Tar- 
tary, Astrachan and through Russia, or to Moscow, and finally through 
the Kingdom of Thibet, Mogor and Persia." 

Holland, Smyrna and Constantinople became emporiums for rhu- 
barb, so that not only Russian or Muscovitic, but also Holland and 
Turkish rhubarbs were spoken of. Gradually this trade was diverted 
into other courses. Russia entered into treaties with China, and the 
commerce between the two great empires was concentrated at the 
market of Kiachta, in Southern Siberia. The good rhubarb henceforth 
took its way through Siberia and Russia, whilst only the poorer sorts 
were brought for export to Canton, the only port in China at that time 
open. The further changes that the commerce in rhubarb have under- 
gone have been described elsewhere. 1 

Professor Fluckiger then proceeds to glance at the more recent 
notices which have appeared concerning the countries in which rhu- 
barb is collected. The famous description of the Jesuit mission only 
states that the native country of the principal kind of rhubarb was the 
province of Se-tschueu (Suitschuan) ; also the snow mountains from 
Sue-cheu to Leang-tcheou ; and, lastly, Thibet, where, however, only 
a poorer root was found. Father J. B. der Halde, to whom we owe 
this information, bases it upon the testimony of eye witnesses, who do 
not, however, appear to have given any special attention to rhubarb. 

More trustworthy information is given in an account of a journey 
from Pekin to Sz'tshwan (Oct., 1871 to May, 1872) by F. V. Richtofcn, 
who mentions that amongst the products of the province of Sz'tshwan 
(or Sui-tschuan, at the head of the great Kiang river) the rhubarb grows 
wild only an the highest hills. The central line of its occurrence runs 
through the Bayanksra range (southwest of the salt sea of Koko-nor), 
where the yellow river (Hwangho) takes its rise. From this range the 
rhubarb extends through the highlands north and south. In the south 

1 " Pharmacographia," pp. 443-445. 

3 1 4 Rhubarb and Rheum Officinale. } Am )l^'J 7 ^ rm ' 

it occurs on the hills in the more immediate neighborhood of Kwan- 
hien, but the better sorts begin first ten or twelve days' journey further 

The principal markets for rhubarb are Sining-fu (just as in Marco 
Polo's time) in Kansu and Kwanhien in Sz'tshwan. That which comes 
from the first named place is known as Schensi rhubarb, and obtains 
the highest price, notwithstanding that the inhabitants of Sz'tshwan are 
convinced that they produce a better sort. In the western part of the 
plain of Tshing-tu-fu a kind of rhubarb is cultivated in the fields ; but 
it is far inferior to the wild plant which does not allow of cultivation, 
and resembles that which is produced in the frontier hills between Sz' 
tshwan, Hupe and Shensi. 

Evidently, therefore, the rhubarb plant is distributed through an 
immense tract of country in the central provinces of China ; it is con- 
sequently quite possible that several species yield the same drug. 

Von Richthofen's statement that the best sorts are obtained from 
wild plants is remarkable, as formerly it was generally accepted that 
the plants were cultivated. The contradiction is probably explained in 
a letter received by Collin 1 from the missionary Biet in 1871, accord- 
ing to which the rhubarb plant succeeds best, at any rate in Upper 
Thibet, in the land richly manured by cattle surrounding the mountain 
huts and stables. The same thing may be said of Rumex alpinus^ so 
nearly allied to the species of Rheum, in the mountains of Germany, 
where it grows most luxuriantly in such land, although it is not the sub- 
ject of special culture. 

In 1870, the apostolic vicar Chauveau reported from Thibet that 
the export of rhubarb from that land had almost ceased, and that no- 
body cultivated it. It appears, therefore, that the principal seat of the 
rhubarb production must be considered still to lie in regions mentioned 
in the middle ages. The natural central point for its export is the city 
of Hankow in the province of Hupe, on the upper Kiang, or Yan-tse- 
Kiang. Nevertheless, the yearly export from Hankow to Shanghai 
does not exceed 250,000 kilos, and it is probable that the general con- 
sumption of the drug is falling off. 

From the foregoing, Professor Fluckiger draws the following con- 
clusions : 

lu Des Rhubarbes" (Paris, 1871), p. 24- 

Am ju J Ci8 P 7 6? rm } Selections from the Banish Journals. 315 

1. In Rheum officinale, we possess for the first time a plant, the root- 
stock of which agrees with the true rhubarb. 

2. This kind grows in Thibet, the northeast district of which prob- 
ably formerly yielded good rhubarb, but appears to do so no longer. 

3. Whether Rheum officinale occurs in Sui tschuan, Schensi and 
Kansu, from which provinces the true rhubarb is obtained, remains to 
be seen. 

4. Also, we require more exact information respecting R. palmatum y 
var. Tanguticum. The ofKcial rhubarb formerly came from the provinces 
mentioned under 3, at one time by land, at another through Canton, 
reaching the sea at Ormuz, Syria, Asia Minor or South Russia, ac- 
cording to existing political relations. 

5. Only when China became more accessible, this drug took its 
natural way to Hankow, the chief market of the Chinese Interior, and 
from thence to the sea. — Pharmaceutical Journal and Transactions, 18765, 
April 29, from Neues Repe-t.f Phar., Jan. 



Nitric Acid. — It is customary to reject the first thin distillate which 
will contain the hydrochloric acid present. O. H. Schytt calls atten- 
tion to the following method which does away with the trouble of 
changing receiver and watching the distillate ; heat, till dry, in a sand- 
bath (in a porcelain capsule), saltpetre and nitric acid in the proportion 
of one fluidounce of acid to every five pounds of the salt. Every 
trace of hydrochloric acid will in this way have been removed, and the 
distillate from the saltpetre so treated will be pure nitric acid. (The 
editor remarks that this method has been recommended, among others, 
by J. BischofFin his " prakt. Arbeit, im chem. Labor.," 1862). — Archiv 
Jor Pharm., 1876, p. 151. 

Extract of Beef — Bouchardat warns against the incautious use of 
this extract, under the mistaken notion that an increase of dose will be 
followed by a corresponding increase of benefit. Both he and Stuart 
Cooper have shown that large doses of the extract are quite injurious. 
He further asserts that it cannot at all be compared to meat-juice (ex- 
pressed in the cold from raw meat) as a strength giver. — Ibid., p. 160, 
from Bull. Thkrap., 1875, Nov. 

316 Selections from the Banish Journals. { Am ^^ rm ' 

Phosphorus. — The solution of phosphorus in alcohol generally takes 
from 12 to 24 hours, and the alcohol has moreover to be kept warm 
all the time. It is, therefore, proposed to use glycerin as a solvent. 
Phosphorus dissolves quite readily by shaking for several minutes with 
warm glycerin ; an addition of warm alcohol will prevent any deposit 
of phosphorus in cooling. — Ibid,, p. 162, from Apoth. Zeit. y 1875, No. 35. 

Assay of Cinchona. — Handry recommends the following as a very 
quick and sufficiently reliable method : Put into a beaker-glass (or 
other convenient utensil) 10 grams bark in coarse powder, and 20 grams 
ammonia water ; stir for several minutes, and add i$ccm. ether, stir 
again, let stand till clear and decant the ether into a bottle. The 
warmth of the hand will be sufficient to evaporate the ether remaining 
in the mixture. Now repeat the treatment with ether 5 to 6 times, 
taking care not to add the ether before the remainder of the former 
has entirely evaporated. The difference in the weight of the beaker, 
before and after the ether treatment, indicates the amount of quinia. 

Cinchonia is estimated by treating this residual bark with chloro- 
form in the same way as above. — Ibid., p. 163, from J. de Pharm. et de 
Chim., 1876, p. 208. 

Antidote to Strychnia. — The East Indian physicians recommend 
nicotia as the surest antidote, which is given in exceedingly small 
-quantities in sherry several times a day. In default of nicotia, a decoc- 
tion of tobacco leaves ( \ ounce to a pint) is given. — Ibid., p. 167. 

Adulteration of Arrow Root. — H. P. Madsen, received some time ago, 
an original package of arrow root, the appearance of which was all that 
could be desired, and stood the test of the Danish Pharmacopoeia, par- 
ticularly that with muriatic acid, very well. It did dissolve completely 
in boiling water, but did not form a thick mucilage even when a very 
large quantity was dissolved. Examined under the microscope, the 
arrow root in question presented elliptical grains, about three times 
larger than those of maranta, and mostly provided with a well-devel- 
oped hilum, which latter characteristic points to tacca fecula from tacca 
pennatifida. The grains of canna fecula (from canna coccinea) are of 
similar shape and size, but the hilum is quite indistinct. The package 
was consequently returned. 

He mentions also having received two packages with damaged 
arrow root. About the first cask there could not be any doubt, the 

Am j-Sy"'i8 7 h 6! rm '} Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. 317 

musty smell pervaded the whole contents; the second cask, however, 
presented nothing unusual in the top layer, but the last half of it was 
found to be musty. Mr. Madsen, therefore, recommends to examine 
the whole package, and not to be satisfied with a small sample from 
the top. — Ntj Pharm. Tid.^ 1876, p. 140. 

Pharmacy in Sweden. — The new poison law dates from January 7th,, 
1876. The following abstract will give a fair idea of fts strict 
requirements : 

Arsenious acid must not be manufactured except by special permis- 
sion, and cannot be imported by other persons than apothecaries and 
those manufacturers for whom arsenic is a necessity. It can be re- 
tailed only by apothecaries, and then only on a recent prescription (or 
order) from a physician, veterinary surgeon or dentist. It may be sold,, 
further, to well-known savants and to other people licensed to its use. 
It must not, on any account, be sold for poisoning animals, or for con- 
servation of corpses. 

The sworn assistants (every graduate in Sweden is sworn to his pro- 
fession, so to speak, before being permitted to serve as such) can only 
sell arsenic on a prescription ; the other sales can only be made by the 
apothecary himself. 

The responsibility is put somewhat curiously : The pharmaceutical 
assistant and the superintendent of a factory are responsible for any 
and every transgression ; while the apothecary and manufacturer only 
are responsible in so far as they themselves are parties to it. — Ibid. r . 

P- J 73- • 



Solution of Albuminate of Mercury for Hypodermic Injection. — Prof. 
Bamberger dilutes the albumen of hens eggs with 4 times its volume 
of water, strains through cloth and passes the liquid through a plaited 
filter. Should the filtrate not be perfectly clear, it is mixed with a few 
drops of glycerin, well shaken, and after 10 or 12 hours filtered. It 
is important that an excess of albumen as well as of corrosive subli- 
mate be avoided. To attain this, Dr. Hamberger uses carbonate of 
sodium as an indicator. To a small portion of the albumen solution, 
a solution of corrosive sublimate of known strength is gradually added,,, 
and a drop of the liquid occasionally tested with the soda solution ; the 

318 Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. { Am, jSy%? 7 ^ rltt * 

appearance of a yellowish or reddish color indicates an excess of cor- 
rosive sublimate. Sufficient of the albumen solution is now added 
until the precipitate by carbonate of sodium has a purely white color. 
The amount of chloride of sodium necessary for affecting a permanent 
solution is now ascertained by adding sufficient of its aqueous solution 
until merely a faint cloudiness remains. From the figures thus obtained 
the necessary proportions are readily calculated. The mixture is set 
aside for two days, then filtered and kept in small well-corked vials in 
a cool place. The solution is made to contain i per cent, of mercury 
albuminate, when iocc. will yield 0*171 sulphide of mercury. — Zeitscbr. 
d. oester. Apoth. Ver., 1876, No. 10 and 12. 

Solution of Ammonium Acetate. — J. C. Thresh purchased seven sam- 
ples, only two of which were colorless aud had a neutral reaction. 
They varied in specific gravity between i*ou and 1*018 and the per- 
centage of ammonium acetate between 4*6 and 7*9. — Pharm. your, 
and Trans., 1876, April 1, p. 781. 

Glycerol of Subacetate of Lead is recommended by Balmanno Squire 
as a very useful application in chronic eczema and other skin diseases. 
It is prepared of the same strength as the liquor plumbi subacetatis, sub- 
stituting glycerin for the water. The heating is effected in an oil bath, 
care being taken to keep the temperature a little below the boiling 
point of glycerin, and when the reaction has been accomplished, the 
solution is to be filtered while hot, since after cooling it is too viscid 
to pass through the filter. For use it is diluted with from three to 
seven times its quantity of glycerin, as occasion requires.— Pbar. Jour, 
and Trans., May 6, p. 881. 

C. D. Parry proposes to mix equal measures of liquor plumbi suba- 
cetatis and glycerin and to evaporate by gentle heat until the water is 
driven off.— Ibid., May 27, p. 942. 

Phosphorus Pills. — Messrs. Allen and Hanburys suggest the follow- 
ing formula as an efficient sustitute for that of the British " Pharmaco- 
poeia," which combines the phosphorus with tolu balsam and yellow 
wax : 2 grains of phosphorus dissolved in sufficient bisulphide of car- 
bon, are mixed with powdered soap and guaiac resin, of each gr. xxxv, 
glycerin gtt. xii and powdered liquorice rootgr. xii or sufficient to make 
a mass weighing gr. c. The bisulphide evaporates readily, and the 
mass formed is of good consistence, easily manipulated, readily misci- 


Am 'jiiy, r i8 > 7 6 arm '} Gleanings from the Fortigu Journals. 319 

ble with other remedies, and what is most important readily soluble. — 
Ibid., May 20, p. 921. 

Pancreatic Meat Emulsion has been brought to the notice of the 
Berlin Apothecaries' Society, by F. Riedel, who obtained from Dr. 
Rosenthal the following formula for its preparation : 250 grams of 
finely scraped beef are triturated in a mortar with 25 grams of pan- 
creatic liquid (from the hog) and warm water, until a homogenous, 
light reddish brown emulsion-like mixture results, which is injected 
per anum with some pressure, the bowels having been previously 
cleansed by warm water injection. It is stated that persons have thus 
been nourished, who for months were unable to swallow or digest food 
taken in the ordinary way. — Phar. Zeit., No. 18. 

The Preservation of Raw Meat is effected by A. Herzen by immers- 
ing it for 24 or 36 hours in a solution containing 150 boric acid, 30 
borax, 15 table salt and 5 saltpetre in 2,000 parts of water. The 
meat retains its fresh appearance and may afterwards be packed in 
barrels. — Chem. Centralbl., 1876, No. 15. 

Black Varnish for Leather. — Hager gives the composition of a com- 
mercial article as follows : 30 parts shellac, 2 p. mastic, 1 p. sandarac, 
1 p. Venice turpentine, 1 p. castor oil, 145 p. 95 per cent, alcohol and 
sufficient nigrosin (anilin black), — Apotheker-Zeit., 1876, No. 9. 

Nickelplating. — W. Baker and J. Unvin use the following compo- 
sition of the solution : 100 p. nickel sulphate, 53 tartaric acid, 14 caustic 
soda and 100 parts of water. — Ber. d. deutsch. chem. Ges., 1876, 109. 

The bark of Rhamnus Jrangula, which has recently been frequently 
recommended as a reliable cathartic, has been the subject of a curious 
observation by Dr. Lamm, of Stockholm. Finding that a bark required 
double or even treble the usual dose, he ascertained that it had been 
recently collected, and in comparing it with a bark known to be three 
or four years old, obtained much better and prompter results with the 
latter. The inefficacy of the fresh bark may account for the disuse 
into which Rhamnus frangula has occasionally fallen. Fristedt men- 
tions (1873) tnat tne recent Dai "k produces colic and vomiting, and the 
last edition of the Norwegian " Pharmacopoeia " requires the bark to 
kept for one year before it is used medicinally. — Zeits. Oesterr. Apoth. 
Ver., 1876, p. 156. 

320 Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. } Am jif y u , r l8 P 7 6 arm - 

Hops as a Ferment. — It is usually assumed that the addition of hops 
in beer-brewing has the effect or retarding fermentation, in conse- 
quence of the precipitation of albuminous substances by its tannin and 
volatile oil. Sacc, however, believes that hops support fermentation, 
and that they contain a peculiar ferment of greater fermentative power 
than beer yeast ; this ferment he assumes to be soluble in water, and 
to be not destroyed by boiling. As a proof of this, he cites the man- 
ner in which hops are employed in the United States for the prepara- 
tion of yeast and in bread-baking. — Pbar. Cent. Halle, 1876, No. 11. 

Composition of Malt. — W. G. Valentin reports the following compo- 
sition of two samples of pale malt : 

Starch, . . . . . .44-15 45*13 

Other carbohydrates (60 — 70 per cent, consist of fermentable 
sugars), inulin (PKiihnemann's sinistrin), some other bodies 
soluble in cold water, . 
Cellular matter, .... 

Fat, ..... 

Albuminoids: a t sol. in alcohol, sp. gr. -820, and 

in cold water, . . -63 

b t sol. in cold water, and at 68° C. 3*23 
c f insol. in cold, but sol. in water 

at 68° C, . . . 2-37 

d t insol. at 68 — 70 C, but sol. in 

cold water (albumin proper), . '48 
e, insol. in cold water, and at 70 C. 6*38 

Ash, ..... 
Water, .... 



• "'57 










I 3 -8? 




7 '47 




— Pharm. Jour, and Trans., 1876, April 15, p. 826. 

Volumetric estimation of Carbolic Acid. — Landolt has proposed (Ber. d*. 
deut. Chem. Ges., iv, p. 770) to estimate this acid by precipitating its 
aqueous solution with bromine water, and weighing the washed and 
dried tribromophenol which is produced according to the equation: 
C 6 H 5 .OH-j-6Br.=C 6 H 2 Br 3 .OH-f-3HBr. Owing to the volatility of 
the tribromophenol, W. F. Koppeschaar suggests to make a volumetric 
determination by adding a known volume of titrated bromine water, which 
is more than sufficient to change all the phenol present into tribromo- 
phenol, and then titrate the excess of bromine in the usual manner by 

Am ju J l y l ^I8 P 76 arm • } The International Exposition. 3 2 r 

adding potassium iodide and estimating the iodine by sodic hyposulphite, 
with starch as the indicator. It is necessary to avoid the loss of 
bromine by evaporation. Practical results have also been obtained by- 
using, instead of bromine, a mixture of 5NaBr+NaBr0 3 , made by 
acting with bromine in excess upon caustic soda, evaporating to dry- 
ness and mixing well by trituration; if pure, '751 grams of this mix- 
ture are required for *i gram of phenol. In using this mixture,, 
hydrochloric acid is added to liberate the bromine, otherwise, the mani. 
pulation is essentially the same as before. A mixture of the corres- 
ponding potassium salts appears to be less serviceable. — Phar. Jour, and 
Trans., April 15, p. 821-824. 


n - 

At the Paris exposition of 1867, the exhibits of each nation were arranged ria 
spaces radiating from a central building, which was surrounded by several encircling 
avenues of an oval outline, these avenues separating the various groups of raw and 
manufactured materials from each other. It was thus possible, by passing along 
these concentric avenues, to examine all the goods of the same class that were 
exhibited by the different nations represented, thus affording great facilities for 
reviewing and comparing the natural resources and industries in any special class,, 
of all the countries exhibiting. This plan, admirable in theory, proved, however,, 
a failure, in so far as many nations could not fill the space allotted for the different 
groups, either for the entire want or comparative non-importance of the special 
industries, so that the otherwise unavoidable blanks had to be filled with goods 
from other groups. Notwithstanding this drawback, the arrangement offered obvi- 
ous advantages, which, viewed from another standpoint, are counterbalanced by the 
arrangement of the present exposition, whereby the most important industries can 
be displayed to the* best advantage, and a bird's-eye view obtained of the total pro- 
ductions of each country. 

While it must be acknowledged that the general plan of classification, as adopted 
by the Centennial Commission of the United States, has, in the main, been adhered, 
to also in the arrangement of the special displays, still there are discrepancies,, 
which render the systematic study of any particular branch of industry a matter 
involving considerable labor, often increased by the long journeys from one build- 
ing to another distant one, the intercourse, however, being facilitated by a narrow- 
gauge railroad, with frequently running trains, which convey the visitor to within 
the immediate neighborhood of all the important buildings. To illustrate the dif- 
ficulty hinted at, we may briefly mention that the Main Building contains the greater 
portion of the fixed and essential oils, while very important displays of the same 
class of goods are also found in the Agricultural Building, where, likewise, liquor- 


The International Exposition. 

( Am. Jour. Pharm 
t July, 1876. 

^cc root and liquorice from Italy, a number of indigenous drugs, etc , are observed. 
These variations in the arrangement are partly due to the prominence assumed by 
such articles as products of the soil of some of the countries, partly to the fact that 
many exhibitors have brought forward and displayed in their cases goods belonging 
to several groups; and, to a considerable extent, they are due to the desire of dis- 
playing most effectively the products of one country as an unbroken whole. The 
latter is particularly noticeable in the exhibits of several British colonies, Egypt, and 
some other countries, where articles of food form an important portion of the dis- 
play in their respective departments in the Main Building. 

It is not our purpose in these " Notes" to give a list of the exhibitors or enume- 
rate all the objects of interest to the pharmacist and druggist, nor is it the intention 
of going much into detail, or of attempting to minutely discuss the merits of all. The 
latter is possible only for the members of the juries of the different classes, who are 
afforded ample opportunities for closely inspecting, and, if necessary, testing every- 
thing which has been entered for competition. Visitors are not permitted to handle 
the specimens ; but we are under obligations to many private exhibitors as well as 
foreign commissioners for courtesies extended to us. The main object of these 
;< Notes " will be to convey to the readers of the " Journal " a general idea of the 
• main character of the Exhibition, as far as it relates to articles more directly relating 
to the drug and apothecary business. 

In a country like the United States, where proprietary medicines are largely con- 
sumed by the public, the almost total absence of these preparations is quite noteworthy. 
Since the admission of nostrums to the Exposition was wisely prohibited by the 
Commission, it seems strange that an extensively sold cherry pectoral and other 
preparations by the same manufacturer should have been permitted to occupy a 
space here. If we except one or two minor nostrums, and perhaps also the largely 
represented class of proprietary elixirs, which, in character, are about intermediate 
between legitimate pharmaceutical preparations and nostrums, we find nothing in 
the American department to mar the pleasing effect of the exhibits in this line ; 
even the numerous hair dyes and invigorators are noticeable from their almost com- 
plete absence. From some of the foreign countries, however, quite a number of 
such specialties have been sent, yet mostly in such small numbers, and often so un- 
sightly in external appearance, as to attract little notice. To this there are, however, 
some exceptions, and, to judge from the display of a foreign cherry cordial, it may 
may be presumed that this nostrum is of some importance in its native country, and 
there, probably, takes the place of the numerous bitters and tonics which, in this 
country, furnish the necessary alcohol, in the scarcely disguised garb of medicine, 
to those who do not consume alcoholic liquids as beverages. 

What naturally attracts the prominent attention of the pharmacist and druggist, 
is the display of drugs, in which, however, some countries are insufficiently repre- 
sented ; others compensate for this shortcoming by exhibiting the medicinal resources 
to advantage, and in a manner inviting to closer study. We have noticed but few 
exhibits — one in the U. S. Department, and one or two in the enclosure of foreign 
countries, which show commercial drugs from foreign countries without any 
additional preparation or purification. Alexandria senna, West Indian canella 
alba and similar articles, in our opinion, show neither the resources nor the industry 

Ann. Jour. Pharm.| 
July, 1876. j 

The International Exposition. 

3 2 3 

of the United States, unless the former were exhibited, for instance, in connection 
with the fluid extract, or the latter with the volatile oil or oleo-resin prepared from it 
in this country, the crude being then valuable only as the source of the manufactured 

The display of drugs indigenous to the United States, is not as extensive as 
might have been expected 5 still there are some very creditable collections, and 
more may perhaps be found in the Agricultural building, where we observed a 
specimen of the bark of Celastrus scandens, marked Solanum dulcamara, the 
parties having been undoubtedly misled by the name of bittersweet, which is com- 
monly used to designate both drugs. But we shall speak more fully of our indig- 
enous materia medica on a future occasion, and now proceed to the crude drugs of 
foreign countries and their various products. 

The gem of the exhibit of drugs, in our opinion, is found in the enclosure of the 
Dutch colonies, where the cultivation of the cinchonas is shown in an admirable 
manner. The introduction of the cinchonas into Java, and subsequently into India 
and other countries, is now a matter of history which has recorded also the names 
of those who were active in introducing the plants and observing the most favorable 
conditions under which the various species are most successfully cultivated. It is 
well known that the first attempt on a large scale was made in Java in 1856 by 
Hasskarl, while Pahud was colonial minister in the Netherlands. But it was 
chiefly after the cultivation was commenced in British India in i860, and the results 
of the observations made in the two countries were compared, that the plantations 
assumed not only large dimensions, but that also the yield and quality of the bark 
gave promise of undoubted success. 

Examining these colonial products, we notice first nine photographs, comprising 
views of different cinchona plantations in Java, and of a propagating house, where 
the young plants are nursed until they are fit for being transplanted to the plantation. 
Another photograph shows a number of workmen engaged in stripping the bark, 
and the last one the manner in which it is dried and packed. We now turn our 
attention to the botanical specimens, of which there are eleven distinct varieties, of each 
a flowering branch and one with developed capsules being fastened upon card board, 
together with three specimens of bark taken respectively from the branchlets, the 
larger branches and the trunk. In addition thereto, each variety is accompanied by 
a card, upon which is fastened a transverse and a longitudinal section of the stem, 
so that upon the two cards all the characteristics, morphological as well as structural, 
can be readily studied. There is also of each variety, a log about two feet in 
length, covered with the bark, and one end cut so as to show a longitudinal and 
a transverse section of both the wood and bark. Samples of bark of each variety, 
several being in bales, complete this interesting collection, which is so handsome 
and complete in itself as to challenge the admiration of all interested in this 

The collection embraces eight distinct species of Cinchona, one or two of which 
are not rich in alkaloids, namely : C. rnicrantha, Ruiz and Pa<von, C. Hasskarliana, 
Miquel, C. lancifolia var. discolor Karsten, C. officinalis Lin., C. caloptera Miq. t 
C. succirubra Pauon, C. calisaya Wed. and C. Pahudiana Hoivard. Of the latter 
species, there is also the variety lanceolata Miq., and calisaya is represented by no 

3 2 4 

The International Exposition. 

f Am. Jour. Pharm, 
1 July, 1876. 

less than three varieties, namely: 1, raised from seed brought by Hasskarl 5 z r 
from seed sent by Schuhkraft, and 3, by Ledger from Bolivia. The branches of 
the first variety have broadly ovate leaves with a tapering base; those of the second 
are much narrower and lanceolate, and of the third variety, ovate and lanceolate 
leaves are presented. 

The Javanese exhibition of cinchonas would be incomplete without the display 
of the cinchona alkaloids, which together with some of their salts, are shown in var- 
ious stages of purity; likewise the mixed alkaloids of red bark which have been 
used with good results in the Indian hospitals and Europe (see £>uinetum in March 
number, p. 134). These preparations are manufactured in Java, and although they 
are not of the dazzling whiteness in which we expect to see them here, no doubt 
can be entertained of their purity, a minute quantity of coloring matter excepted. 

Adjoining the Netherlands, we find in the enclosure of Mexico an instructive col- 
lection of medicinal plants, sent here by the Sociedad Mexicana de Hktoria Naturah 
For the present, we notice more especially a dried specimen of Cinchona Calisaya,, 
including flowers, fruit and bark. Cinchona seeds were distributed in Mexico in 
1866 by the Emperor Maximilian, but for several years afterwards the cultivation* 
was not successful (see "Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1870, p. 542). This seems to be differ- 
ent now, if we may be permitted to judge from botanical specimens of the plants- 
and samples of their barks exhibited by Mr. Hugo Fink, of Cordoba, and which 
were grown by him in the neighborhood of that city. Three species are represented,, 
namely, Cinchona officinalis, Lin. (S. condaminea), C. succirubra and C. calisaya. 
Two botanical specimens (flowering and fruiting branch) are shown of each species., 
and though in beauty of preparation and preservation they are not equal to the Java 
specimens, yet, in the absence of the latter, they would be regarded not only as in- 
teresting and instructive, but even as beautiful. Specimens of quilled bark ac- 
company each species, and of Cinchona officinalis a section of the trunk, 9 years old,, 
nearly 2 feet long and about 6 inches in diameter is shown, with the bark still ad- 

Passing westward in the Main Building, we meet cinchona barks again in the 
American department in connection with the displays of Powers & Weightman and 
of Rosengarten & Sons, where they are shown as the source of quinia and the allied 
alkaloids exhibited by both firms in large quantities and in a variety of combinations. 
The barks exhibited by Rosengarten & Sons comprise samples of red, Calisaya, 
hard Pitaya and cinchona barks, grown in India and Ceylon. Powers & Weight- 
man show original packages and separate samples of Calisaya, red and other South 
American barks, and samples of their powder; also, East Indian bark from Cinch, 
succirubra and C. officinalis, the latter partly of the first crop and partly of the 
renewed kind. It will be remembered that in India the bark is partly removed from 
one side of the tree in such a manner as not to disturb the cambium layer, after 
which the wound is covered up, when the bark will again be formed, and, after 
some years, will have attained sufficient thickness to be collected as renewed bark. 
Treated in this manner, the tree is made to yield several successive crops of bark. 

The cinchona alkaloids and their salts form a prominent feature of the exhibits of 
the two Philadelphia firms mentioned, more particularly the sulphates which are 
shown in bulk in large quantities ; the weight of the quinia sulphate in one glass 

^ m juiy" r ;876 arm * } The International Exposition. 325 

case of Powers & Weightman , s being 1,003 ounces. Chinoidin is likewise to be 
found in both places in very considerable quantities. 

Among the new or rarer salts exhibited by both firms, may be mentioned the 
handsomely-crystallized bisulphates of the four cinchona alkaloids, which are more 
•soluble than the sulphates ordinarily employed— the hydrobromates, hydriodates, 
hydrochlorates, phosphates, acetates, citrates, etc., of one or more cinchona alka- 
loids. Similar salts of the same alkaloids are likewise shown by Ch. T. White & 
Co., and amongst them is particularly noticeable a very handsomely-crystallized 
sample of valerianate of quinia. In this connection it may not be amiss to again 
call attention to the incorrectness of naming the compounds of alkaloids with hydro- 
bromic acid bromides; since in these combinations the hydrogen of HBr is not dis- 
placed, their correct appellation is hydrobromates. 

Directly opposite to the chemical exhibits of the United States is the chemical 
section of the German empire, in which we find compounds of the cinchona alka- 
loids, exhibited only by Jul. Jobst, of Stuttgart, the other quinia manufacturers being 
not represented. Besides several of the salts mentioned above, we find here crys- 
talline masses of a compound marked Chininum sulfuricum biacidum (tetrasulphuri- 
cum), and which,therefore,appears to be a definite compound of one molecule of quinia 
and four of sulphuric acid. The results of Jobst and Hesse's observation, mentioned 
in another place (see page 328), are shown in small samples of phenated muriate and 
sulphate of quinia, named by them phenylmuriate and phenylsulphate, names which, 
at least for pharmaceutical purposes, appear to us to be less desirable than the for- 
mer, because one may be confounded with the sulphophenate (sulphocarbolate) from 
which it is entirely distinct. Since the new salts liberate carbolic acid very readily 
sunder various circumstances, they may probably be destined to become important 
•remedies. Salicylate of quinia, the only specimen noticed by us, is exhibited by 
the same firm ; also, the handsomely-crystallized compound of quinia with anethol, 
•discovered some years ago by O. Hesse. It has the taste of quinia and anise, and 
when heated evolves anethol. The conchinin (Hesse's) and its preparations exhib- 
ited, are identical with Pasteur's quinidia ; but the chinamin is an alkaloid, discovered 
by O. Hesse in the bark of Cinch, succirubra, cultivated in British India, and the 
name of which we rendered with quinamina ("Amer. Jour. Phar.," 1872, p. 302), 
when noticing Hesse's original papei. The phenylsulphate of cinchonidia, we 
suppose, belongs to the same class of compounds noticed above, but we do not e- 
snember having met with an account of it. 

It will be observed that in this exhibit — notwithstanding the large case and the 
small bottles by which attention is first attracted to it — we meet the results of very 
considerable original research. 

Some distance to the northwest of the former, and just at the entrance to the 
exhibits of Jamaica, we observe a stem, 22 feet high, of Cinchona succirubra. We 
are informed by Mr. Robt. Thomson, Superintendent of the Government Botonical 
Gardens, at Kingston, Jamaica, and commissioner to this exposition, by 
whom the very interesting and instructive collection from Jamaica has been very 
judiciously arranged, and to a considerable extent furnished, that the cultivation of 
cinchonas was commenced there by the government in 1868, the plantation now 
consisting of 300 acres, about 40 acres having been planted annually. The 


The International Exposition. 

f Am Jour. Pharm. 
1 July, 1876. 

cliraatal conditions requisite for this culture are found in the Blue mountains, at a 
height of from 4,000 to 6,00c feet above the sea, where the temperature rarely falls 
below 50 F. or rises above 70 , and where the necessary humidity is afforded. 
The first crop of bark is expected to be realized about the tenth year from the time 
of planting out, as has been the case in the plantations of India. Mr. Thomson 
exhibits, however, the bark from three trees, seven years old, of which C. Calisaya 
yielded 3, C. succirubra 4 and C. officinalis 2 lbs. of bark. According to the 
analyses, made by De Vrij' and Howard, some time ago, the last named species 
does not promise to become rich in alkaloids. Moreover, it does not grow so 
vigorously as the two preceding species, and, as will be seen above, yields less bark 
in the same period ; for these reasons its cultivation has not been extended for some 
years past. The two other species, of which the succirubra is the most rapid 
grower, yielded, to the two quinologists named before, very satisfactory results, so 
that Jamaica may be expected to produce, in a few years, a steady supply of excel- 
lent cinchona bark. 

With the above, we have exhausted all the fine specimens of cinchonas and theiir 
products. The India department of the exhibition contains, from the India 
Museum, at London, an excellent collection of articles of Materia Medica from 
the East Indies, which gives a fair idea of the vast resources of that rich country. 
In that collection are also samples of Calisaya and red barks from the Neilgherry 
mountains and Kangra, but the specimens are small and insignificant as compared 
with those enumerated above, nor has an attempt been made to show the extent 
and success of the cultivation of cinchonas, as we find it in the departments of 
Netherlands, Mexico and Jamaica ; the chemical section of the United States gives 
a far better insight into the importance of India in this respect. The other British 
colonies, into which the cinchonas have been introduced, make, like India, no 
especial display of these valuable barks, nor has Peru sent any samples of these 
products of her soil, except a small bottle labeled vascarilla^ without any other 
designation, and containing quilled cinchona bark of undetermined origin. 

Brazil exhibits a bark, from Matto Grosso, which is labeled Cinchona cuyabensis? 
a name which we do not find in WeddelPs " Notes sur les Quinquinas,' 1 nor is it 
stated whether this bark really contains any cinchona alkaloid. 

The chemical products of the cinchonas are likewise not as well represented as 
they deserve to be for their industrial importance alone, even firms being absent 
whose quinia is sometimes met with on this side of the Atlantic. It is true that 
small samples of quinia and other alkaloidal salts are to be found scattered in vari- 
ous places of the exposition ; but they have the appearance rather of being sent 
here as products of pharmaceutical skill, than to give an idea of the large industrial 
pursuits of their countries. 

In the above account we have taken no notice of the scale preparations of quinia 
and iron, of which there are numerous samples, large and small, on exhibition, not 
only by manufacturers of quinia, but also by other manufacturing chemists, manu- 
facturing pharmacists and manufacturers of specialties. The scales are either red- 
brown, like the salt officinal in the U. S , or green, like that officinal in the " British, 
Pharmacopoeia. " All are handsome in appearance. 

We have observed only one living specimen of Cinchona in the Horticultural Hall 
of the exposition ; it is C. succirubra, and the little tree is about four feet high. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. \ 
July, 1876. J 


3 2 7 


New Crystallised Hydrate of Hydrochloric Acid. By I. Pierre and 
E. Puchot. — Strong commercial hydrochloric acid may be maintained at a very low- 
temperature without any change ; but when into the cooled liquid a continuous 
current of nearly dry hydrochloric acid gas is passed, an abundant deposition of 
crystals soon occurs, and at the same time the temperature rises from — 22 to — 
1 8°, remaining stationary at this last point during the formation of the crystals. 
These crystals decompose rapidly in the air, emitting white fumeb ; they very 
quickly dissolve in water at ordinary temperatures, but at — 18 the solution is ef- 
fected very slowly. Analytical results lead the authors to assign for their compo- 
sition the formula HC1.2H 2 0. 

They find that mixtures of snow and ordinary hydrochloric acid constitute 
powerful and economical refrigerants. With 2 parts of snow to 1 part of acid a 
lowering of the temperature to — 32 is readily obtained. — Journ. Chem. Soc. 

Influence of various Solutions upon the Rusting of Iron. By A. 
Wagner. — Details are given of experiments made upon strips of iron which were 
acted upon by water containing various salts, in presence of air free from carbon 
dioxide, and of air containing that gas at various temperatures, and also in sealed 
tubes, from which air was expelled. 

The general results were that pure water in presence of air, causes iron to rust ; 
that if carbon dioxide \i also present, the rusting is more rapid ; that the production 
of rust is materially increased by the chlorides of magnesium, ammonium sodium, 
potassium, barium and calcium, the first mentioned being most active in this respect ; 
that iron immersed in evaporated river-water rusts more slowly than iron in distilled 
water ; that the presence of oils or fats greatly diminishes the rapidity of rusting 5 that 
alkalies prevent the rusting entirely Magnesium chloride solution in the absence of 
air attacked iron at a temperature of about ioo ; chlorides of sodium, potassium, 
barium, and calcium were without action under the same circumstances. The origi- 
nal paper must be consulted for details and measurements. Journ. Chem. Soc. [Lond.] 

On the Active Constituent of Ergot of Rye. By R. Buchheim. — 
According to the author's experiments, the active constituent of ergot (ergotin) is 
a body closely resembling animal gelatin. It is easily soluble in cold water, and 
is, therefore, contained in the cold aqueous infusion of ergot. Like gelatin, it 
gives precipitates with phenylsulphuric acid, tannic acid, and chlorine. It cannot, 
however, be completely precipitated by tannic acid. It is formed by the action of 
the mycelium of a fungus on the gluten of rye, by which action the gluten under- 
goes a series of transformations, terminating in its conversion into leucin, ammonia,, 
and trimethylamin. The decomposition of gluten under the influence of the 
fungus is, therefore, analogous to the putrefaction of albumin. In both cases 
albuminous substances undergo a series of transformations different from that 
which occurs in the healthy animal organism, and the products formed have, in 


V arieties. 

! Am. Jour. Pharm. 
\ July, 1876. 

consequence, different properties. The end-products, however, are the same in 
both series. Ergotin, therefore, belongs to the class of putric products, and the 
author thinks it may be possible to obtain from other sources, as for instance putrid 
blood, a body having similar properties. — Jour. Chem. Soc. [Lond.], from Arch. 
Pharm. [3], vii, 32 — 39. 

Combination of Phenol with Neutral Quinia Salts. — J. Jobst and O. 
Hesse obtained white shining prisms on adding an equivalent weight of carbolic 
acid to a hot aqueous solution of neutral quinia sulphate, or on dissolving the salt 
in a hot alcoholic solution of carbolic acid (see also " Amer. Jour. Pharm.," 1876, 
p. 216). The salt is readily soluble in boiling water and alcohol, but requires at 
1 5 C, 680 parts of water and 74 p. of 80 per cent, alcohol for solution. Ether 
and chloroform dissolve only traces of it, but it is freely soluble in a mixture of 
2 vols, chloroform to one of 97 per cent, alcohol. At ioo° C. it looses only water 
of crystallization ; at 130° C. (266 F.) some carbolic acid is given off. Analysis 
proved its composition to be 2(C 20 H 24 N 2 O 2 ,SO 3 ).C 6 H 6 O-{-2H 2 O, which formula 
requires 9 32 S0 3 , 4*17 H.,0 and 75*52 quinia. Salts of similar composition were 
obtained with hydrobromate and hydrochlorate of quinia. — Ann. d. Chem ., 
clxxx, 248. 

Quack-nostrums. — A. Thurmayr, druggist, at Stuttgart, vends a remedy for 
enuresis nocturna, consisting of two vials, one of which, intended as an embroca- 
tion for the regio pubis, is merely expressed oil of almonds. In the other vial, 
containing the internal remedy, a liquid is furnished, consisting of about six 
drachms of urine, mixed with an equal quantity of diluted spirit. — Apoth. Zeit.> 
No. 9, from Industrie Bl. 

Julius Bittner has introduced Schneeberg's consumption herbs, an infallible(? !) 
cure for consumption, which are composed of Iceland moss 100 parts, althea and 
liquorice roots, each 20 parts j figs, St. John's bread, pearl barley, Corinthian 
raisins, ahhea leaves and flowers, mallow flowers, mullein flowers, ground ivy, 
liverwort, colt's foot leaves, lungwort (Pulmonaria) and red poppy petals, of each 5 
parts. — Ibid., No. 12. 

Lebert's American vegetable hair restorative is, according to J. I. E. Popp, a 
mixture of 2 grams milk of sulphur, 4^ grams sugar of lead, 25 grams glycerin 
and 140 grams perfumed water. — Pharm. Zeit. t No. 14. 

Laroche's ferruginous cinchona wine has been examined by Wittstein, and 
found-to contain neither quinia, cinchonia or iron 5 it is merely an alcoholic tincture 
of orange berries, sweetened with sugar. — Arch. d. Pharm., 1876, April, p. 339. 

Anise earth is the name given to a gray clay which occurs in the neighborhood 
of Wischau and Kausnitz, in Moravia, and is formed into small roundish granules 
by the action of earthworms. In the same neighborhood anise is extensively culti- 
vated, and this granular clay is used by the dealers to adulterate the anise fruit to 
the extent of 20 per cent. The collectors of this anise earth receive about one 




Am. Jour. Pharm. \ 
July, 1876. J 


3 2 9 

guilder (nearly 50 cents) for the hundred weight; the earth is also exported to a 
considerable extent for the same purpose. By dropping a pinch of the suspected 
anise upon white paper, from the height of about twelve inches, the adulteration is 
readily detected, and its amount may be approximately ascertained by picking out 
the fruit. — Apoth. Zeitung, No. 20. 

Vanillin from Eugenol. — E. Erlenmeyer announces that on treating eugenol- 
potassium with potassium permanganate (and it seems as if the same result was 
obtained with potassa alone), vanillin may be obtained. During the action a crys- 
tallizable polymer of eugenol is formed. After the completion of his researches, 
the author will report the results in detail. — Ber. d. Cbem. Ges , 1876, 273. 

Eucalyptus globulus. — P. A. Hartzer has obtained the following principles, 
from old leaves : an acid resin yielding, with sulphuric acid, a copulated acid of a 
handsome carmine color, becoming violet on the addition of ether 5 two resins, 
which are not colored red by sulphuric acid ; a new fatty acid, crystallizing in fine 
needles, the sodium and potassium salts of which are soluble in ether; cerylic or a 
similar alcohol and tannin. The latter yields a red deliquescent crystalline salt on 
treating the etherial solution of the alcoholic extract with a solution of potassa in 
absolute alcohol. — Ibid. y 314-316. 

Pittakal, which was discovered by Reichenbach, 40 years ago, but has not been 
observed since, has been recentlv obtained by Gratzel, from the fractions of wood 
tar having a high boiling point. Liebermann separated from it orange- colored 
needles, which he names eupitton. They dissolve in alcohol and acetic acid with a 
brown, in ammonia with a blue and in alkalies with a purple color ; carbonic acid, 
or the addition of saline solutions causes blue precipitates which are soluble in pure 
water, the precipitates by calcium, magnesium, barium and tinsalts usually having 
a beautiful gold lustre. The lead precipitate dissolves in concentrated sulphuric 
acid with a red color, which changes to blue on warming.— Ibid , 334-337. 

Naphthalin from Oil of Turpentine. — By passing oil of turpentine through 
a red-hot tube, G. Schultz observed that much carbon was separated, and hydrogen 
evolved, the distillate containing several hydro-carbons. On redistilling the pro- 
duct, the portion obtained between 230 and 232 C. congealed, and, after filtering 
and pressing, between bibulous paper, yielded naphthalin, which crystallized from 
alcohol, fused at 30 C. (176 F.), boiled at 217 C. (422*6° F.) and furnished with 
picric acid, a compound crystallizing in yellow needles and fusing at 149° C. 
(300*2° F.). — Ber. d. Deutsch. Chem. Ges., 1876, p. 548. 

A New Glucoside in the Flowers of Cichorium Intybus has been dis- 
covered by Dr. R. Nietzki. The flowers were extrated with boiling 60 per cent, alcohol 
the alcohol evaporated in the presence of water, the filtrate slightly acidulated with 
acetic acid,and precipitated by acetate of lead. The clear filtrate was treated with sul- 
phuretted hydrogen, and then evaporated to a thin syrup, from which the body crys- 


Minutes of the College, 

/Am. Jour. Pharm. 
t July, 1876. 

tailized on standing 5 it was washed with cold water and repeatedly crystallized 
from hot water, when it formed white stellate needles, which were insoluble in 
ether, freely soluble in hot water and alcohol, also with a golden yellow color in 
caustic and carbonated alkalies. The warm solution had a very bitter taste. Boiled 
with a dilute acid, sugar is produced, and a sparingly soluble crystalline body. — 
Arch. d. Pharm., April 327-337. 

Salicylate of Sodium, when treated in aqueous solution with carbonic acid, 
is decomposed, yielding free salicylic acid. Since carbonic acid is continually formed 
by the various tissues, the blood, notwithstanding its alkalinity,contains a certain quan- 
tity of carbonic acid in the free or continually dissociating condition, and for these 
reasons, Prof. Binz believes that salicylates are not without action when taken 
internally. This view is strengthened by the antiseptic action, observed in liquids 
capable of putrefaction, urine for instance, when mixed with salicylate of sodium 
and carbonic acid. — N. Repert., 1876, 205-210. 


Philadelphia, June 26th, 1876. 

A stated meeting of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy was held this day at 
the College Hall, No. 145 North Tenth Street. 

In the absence of the President, Professor John M. Maisch was called to the 
chair. Sixteen members present. 

The minutes of the annual meeting were read, amended, and adopted. 

The minutes of the Board of Trustees for the last three months were read by the 
Secretary of the Board, and on motion approved. 

Wm. C. Bakes read a letter from Professor de Luca, of Naples, donating to the 
College, with an order for the goods, some specimens of Chemicals, which are now 
on exhibition at the International Exposition. 

Also a letter from Mr. Bosisto, President of the Pharmaceutical Association of 
Victoria, Australia, donating several specimens of drugs, including a number of 
products from the various species of Eucalyptus, also on exhibition at the Cen- 

On motion, the Corresponding Secretary was directed to acknowledge the re- 
ceipt of the letters, and to convey to both the gentlemen the thanks of the College 
for their respective valuable donations to the Cabinet. 

Professor Maisch stated that on the nth of July he would attend the Interna- 
tional Exposition at the request of some members of the Botanical Class, to explain 
to them such drugs, chemicals and Botanical specimens as were there exhibited. 
He embraced this opportunity to extend an invitation to all students feeling an in- 
terest in the matter to be present at the time appointed. 

This being the time for an election for delegates to attend the meeting of the 
American Pharmaceutical Association in September next, and also for delegates to 

Am 'jii > y, r 'i8 > 7 h 6 arm '} Minutes of the Pharmaceutical Meeting. 331 

attend the Conference of Pharmaceutical Colleges, an election was ordered. Ed- 
ward C. Jones and E. M. Boring acting as tellers, reported the following gentlemen 
elected as delegates to the American Pharmaceutical Association, viz. : 

Charles Bullock, Peter Williamson, Thos. S. Wiegand, Samuel F. Troth, Wm. 
J. Jenks. 

Delegates to the Pharmaceutical Conference: Professors Robert Bridges, John 
M. Maisch, Joseph P. Remington. Then, on motion, adjourned. 

William J. Jenks, Secretary. 


A meeting for social and scientific purposes in continuance of the regular phar- 
maceutical meetings was held June 20th, 1876, James T. Shinn in the chair. The 
minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved. Strangers present were 
invited to participate. 

Prof. Maisch donated to the library " Ricerche sperimentali sulla Solfatara di 
Pozzuoli, per S. Luca " and ten other pamphlets by the same author, which were 
sent by him with the specimens donated to the cabinet. 

From J. U. Lloyd a specimen of a yellow neutral crystallized principle obtained 
from the root of Eupatorium Purpureum. It is quite soluble in hot, slightly so in 
cold alcohol, and insoluble in water 5 does not unite with dilute acids, is decomposed 
by stiong sulphuric acid, is tasteless and as far as known has no medicinal value. 

Wallace Procter presented a specimen of oil of peppermint, 54 years old. 

Prof. Maisch read a paper, by Charles L. Mitchell, on a concentrated solution of 
salicylic acid. (See page 305.) 

J. T. Shinn observed when a solution was made with equal parts of borax and 
salicylic acid, the taste was very bitter, when, however, two parts of borax were used 
this was not the case. 

Prof. Maisch believed if the estimate of Prof. Kolbe and others as to the virtues, 
of salicylic acid are to be of value to physicians, they must use it in the free state 
as this is the only way in which it is effective 5 if salts are employed to effect a more 
ready solution, some chemical change is most probably the result. (See also p. 330.) 

E. M. Boring had in common with many others, had trouble with prescriptions 
for this acid from physicians laboring under the error in regard to its solubility and 
the probable changes produced by the use of chemical solvents. Quite recently 
water of ammonia had been used to effect the solution of a large quantity of the 
acid in water ; this was only another instance in which the elegant pharmacist gave 
the conscientious dispenser a great amount of trouble. He also exhibited honey 
which had been obtained by himself from the comb, exposed to direct sunlight ; it 
became candied in a short time, whereas a portion of the same lot in diffused light 
had undergone no change. He had also examined a sample of yellow wax which 
had the concave surface said to be characteristic of adulteration with paraffin, yet 
upon testing with sulphuric acid failed to find any. 

Prof. Maisch exhibited a small branch of a plant from Oregon, probably a Te- 
tranthera, nat. ord. Lauraceae, with a pellucid punctate leaf, having an aromatic ordor,, 

33 2 American Pharmaceutical Association. { Am jif y u ( r l8 P 7 6? rm ' 

and at first pleasant, but afterwards very pungent to the taste, which seems to indi- 
cate that it may possess medicinal properties. 

Dr. Pile said that he had made dilute phosphoric acid by the second process of 
Prof. Markoe, and succeeded very well, the summer temperature being favorable, 
and little attention being required. Other members had found it necessary to op- 
erate at a somewhat higher temperature than had been indicated by Prof. Markoe. 
Dr. Pile also stated that he found written upon a prescription — " examined and 
found correct," and supposed this an additional method of indicating the correct- 
ness of an unusual dose. 

J. T. Shinn exhibited thick filtering paper, well suited for rapidly filtering oils or 
syrupy liquids without being liable to break ; it is sold at 50 cents a pound. Several 
members gave valuable hints in regard to filtration, and Prof. Maisch hoped more 
attention would be given to some of the devices for rapid filtration which had been 
illustrated in the Journal. For filtering large quantities of liquids, where evapo- 
ration is not detrimental, Dr. Pile lays the paper flat upon a muslin support, stretched 
upon a frame, and thus obviates all liability to break. 

Several members, having given careful study to the Exposition, contributed to the 
interest of the meeting by calling attention to many drugs and chemicals which are 
worthy of notice. 

On motion, adjourned to meet on July 1 8th, 1876. 

William McIntyre, Registrar. 


The Twenty-fourth Annual Meeting of the American Pharmaceutical Associa- 
tion will be holden in the Hall of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, 145 N. 
Tenth Street, in the City of Philadelphia, on Tuesday, September 12th, 1876, at 
3 o'clock P. M. 

Ample arrangements are being made by the Local Secretary, in connection with 
the friends of the Association in Philadelphia, for the comfort and social enjoyment 
of the visiting members. 

It is important that the meeting of 1876 shall fairly represent the most advanced 
results obtained in the art and science of pharmacy during the past year, and, there- 
fore, the several " standing " and "special committees " should be ready with their 
reports, and the members who have answers to Queries, and those who propose to 
read volunteer papers should see to it, that their investigations are finished in time 
for presentation of the results at the meeting. 

Chairmen of standing committees are reminded of the provision contained in 
Article x, Chapter vi, of the by-laws, by which they are required to furnish a 
copy of their respective reports, together with a synopsis of the same to the Chair- 
man of the Committee on Papers and Queries, Mr. William Saunders, of London, 
Ontario. All persons writing papers for the Association must likewise report to 
the same chairman, previous to the third session [fuide Article viii, Chapter vi, of 
the by-laws). 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Jnly, 1876. 

Pharmaceutisal Colleges and Associations. 333 

To expedite the business of the Association, it is earnestly requested that all 
such papers, with synopsis of the same, be placed in charge of the above named 
chairman, before the opening of the first session. 

It will greatly aid the Secretary and Treasurer if members will see that the appli- 
cations of those whom they propose for membership are properly made out and 
signed, and placed in the hands of the Chairman of the Executive Committee in 
time to be acted upon at the first session. 

The admission fee and the annual contribution ($5.00 each,) should accompany 
the applications, in order to place the names on the roll [<vidt Article iii, Chapter 
vii, of the by-laws). 

In answer to the invitation of the Association, it is expected that the meeting will 
be honored by the presence of delegates from European Pharmaceutical Associa- 
tions ; this will be an important feature of the meeting, which, together with the 
great attraction of the Centennial Exposition, and the many objects of interest in 
and about Philadelphia, cannot fail to render a visit to that city an occasion replete 
with instruction and with social and intellectual pleasure. 

Details with regard to the meeting, and the local arrangements for the reception 
of the Association, will be given in the circular of the Permanent Secretary, Prof, 
John M. Maisch, 145 N. Tenth Street, Philadelphia. 

George F. H. Markoe, President. 

Boston, June, 1876. 


American Pharmaceutical Association. — Most of the Colleges and Asso- 
ciations have informed the Permanent Secretary of the appointment of committees 
whose object it will be to give to visiting pharmaceutists such information as may 
be desirable to facilitate the object of their visit to this country. A number of 
pharmacists from foreign countries have already been visiting the International Ex- 
position, and, after extending their trips to various sections of the country, have 
returned to their homes. Others will doubtless follow as the season advances, and, 
once this side of the Atlantic, will be desirous of seeing as much as possible of the 
new world. They may rest assured that fraternal courtesies will be extended to them, 

National Collece of Pharmacy, Washington, D. C. — The regular monthly 
meeting of the Board of Trustees of the National College of Pharmacy was held 
June 13th, Mr. R. B. Ferguson, President, in the chair, J. C. Fill, Secretary. 

The Committee on the Progress of Pharmacy, through Mr. Chas. Becker, made 
a very interesting report, embracing many recent discoveries in pharmacy and chem- 
istry. The committee recommend that conversational pharmaceutical meetings be 
held at 8 o'clock P.M. on the second Wednesday in each month, the object being 
to discuss more thoroughly the reports of the committee, to secure an interchange 



Am. Jour. Pharm. 

July, 1876. 

of opinion as to the value of new remedies and pharmaceutical appliances, and to 
read original papers upon subjects germain to the objects of the College. The 
report embraced also a synopsis of pharmaceutical and chemical journals in this 
country and Europe. 

The recommendations were adopted. 

Mr. Becker also read a very able paper on salicylic acid. (See page 306.) 

The Committee on Weights and Measures recommended that Congress be peti- 
tioned to require the use of the metrical system in Government departments. 

Letters were read from Profs. E. T. Fristoe, A. M. Read and R. Oldberg, accept- 
ing the chairs of Chemistry, Pharmacy, Materia Medica and Botany, to which they 
were elected at a previous meeting. 

A copy (2 vols.) of the " Medical Statistics of the Provost Marshal-General's 
Bureau" was received from Dr. J. H. Baxter. The Secretary was directed to 
acknowledge the same, and express the thanks of the College. 


Solubility of Ready-made Pills. — The March and April numbers of this 
journal contained several papers on this subject, in which the relative merits of 
pills made in the usual manner with an excipient, or subsequently sugar-coated or 
made by compression have been discussed. Since then we have received a paper 
from Mr. R. V. Mattison, who is a manufacturer of gelatin-coated pills, and speaks 
a word in favor of these specialties. We consider it inexpedient to print the entire 
paper, since it rehearses portions of the former ones, and shall therefore give a brief 
abstract of his arguments. 

Mr. Mattison first objects to the expression of "gelatin-coated or more properly 
speaking, g/z^-coated, " used by one of the writers ; admitting that practically one 
is merely a refined form of the other, he asks : " Was it necessary to appeal to the 
prejudices of the readers, and is there not commercially such a thing as glue, 
and also such an article as gelatin ?" The proper pharmaceutical association of the 
terms, he regards as widely different. Admitting that the gelatin-coated pills " swell 
up," he contends that thereby jelly is formed, which in the natural course of diges- 
tion is readily disintegrated. A? a simple means of testing the solubility of these 
and other kinds of pills, Mr. Mattison suggests to place them upon the tongue, and 
moisten them with saliva, imitating as far as possible the action of the stomach ; 
manipulating in this manner with sixteen varieties of pills, he found the average 
duration of time that the gelatin coating was in dissolving, to be seventy-five 
seconds, the shortest being fifty-five and the longest time ninety seconds, when the 
pills were removed from the mouth owing to the disagreeable taste developed. 

Our readers may repeat the experiments by the several methods suggested, and in 
doing so, the different pills should be placed under precisely similar conditions. In 
our opinion, rapidity of solution is attainable with pills only, when all the material 
composing them is freely and readily soluble ; in the majority of cases, when a 
rapid action is desired, the physician will have to prescribe the medicine in the form 

Am. Jour. Pharm. > 
July, 1876- I 

Editorial — Reviews, etc. 


of solution which is not precipitated by the aqueous liquids of the stomach. In 
judging of the activity of pills, their solid condition should never be lost sight of, 
and the materials, more particularly the excipients and coatings, if any, should be 
such only which in the presence of aqueous liquids are easily dissolved, if the 
quickest activity attainable with pills, is desired. Dry gum acacia is freely, but not 
readily soluble in water, even with such a " churning", motion as is attributed to 
the stomach, and pills made with it are known to have become so hard and prac- 
tically insoluble, as to pass through the intestinal canal, without having been affected 
to any great degree,- yet such pills (of quinia, &c), when moistened with saliva 
and moved about upon the tongue, will in a short time develop a bitter taste. 

Sweet Gum. — Some weeks ago, Louis Hughes, Ph. G., has sent us from 
Dyersburg, Tenn., specimens of branches, fruit and exudation of Liquidambar 
styraciflua, accompanied by the following information, concerning the tree and 
balsam or sweet-gum. 

" The sweet-gum tree is abundant here, and is found in the Bottoms and highlands. 
In the bottoms it is quite large, from 30 to 50 feet high, with rather few and short 
branches 5 in the highlands, it is lower and more spreading. Its appearance is 
different from what we recogize as the gum-tree in the Middle and Southwestern 
States. The wing-like ridges of cork are generally found on the bark of the small 
branches of the lower limbs, and more fully developed in trees growing in the low- 
lands. The "gum" exudes through cracks in the bark, and wounds in the trunk, 
during all seasons of the year, and hardens on exposure to the air. I have found it 
soluble in Alcohol and have made a very nice syrup of it, very much like, and 
almost as pleasant as Tolu. The "gum" is much esteemed by the resident chil- 
dren for chewing, but they select that which is rather hard. During the last three 
months, our house has been shipping upwards of 100 pounds per month to a 
Chewing Gum Manufactory, and it makes a very pleasant article." 

For further information on "sweet gum," the reader is referred to an essay by 
W. L. Harrison, in "Am. Journ. Pharm., " 1874, p. 161; and to various other 
papers published prior to that. 


Microphotographs in Histology, Normal and Pathological. — By Carl Seiler, M.D., in 
conjunction with J. Gibbons Hunt, M.D ; , and Joseph G. Richardson, M.D. 
Philadelphia: J. H. Coates & Co. 4to. Monthly numbers. Price, 60 cents 
each, or $6 per year. 

The object of this publication is, on the one hand, to replace the microscope, as 
tar as possible, for those physicians who have neither opportunity nor leisure to 
make such observations for themselves, and, on the other hand, to furnish microscop- 
ists, for comparison, correct representations of typical specimens in the domain of nor- 
mal and pathological histology. The - editors are well known in the medical pro- 

Reviews, etc. — Obituary. 

I Am. Jour. Pharm . 
I July, 1876. 

fession for their labors in microscopy, and d priori it might be expected that only 
good, reliable and typical specimens will be furnished. The photographs are pre- 
pared by Dr. Seller ; the plan of the work and the selection of the specimens is 
principally due to Drs. Hunt and Richardson, under whose supervision the descrip- 
tive and explanatory text is prepaied. For the present it is purposed to give in each 
monthly issue pictures of at least one pathological and three normal specimens, to 
illustrate the differences between healthy and diseased structures. The various plates 
of the first two numbers, which are now before us, are admirably executed and 
elegantly printed ; the descriptive text is clear and concise, and free from theoretical 
speculations. The publication, in our opinion, meets the highest expectations, and 
deserves to be in the hands of every physician, who does not want to be left behind 
in his profession. 

Annual Report of the College of Pharmacy of the city of New York, ^dth Session 
and Fifth Annual Report of the Alumni Association, 1876, 8vo, pp. 90. 
The pamphlet contains the reports of the officers of the college, and of the 
board of pharmacy, lists of officers and members of the college and of the associa- 
tion, commencement exercises, with the valedictory and other addresses, minutes 
of the business and pharmaceutical meetings, and several papers read at the latter. 

Centennial Newspaper Exhibition, 1876. New York: Compiled by Geo. P. Row- 
ell & Co. 8vo, pp. 300. 

The enterprising firm of G. P. Rowell & Co. have undertaken a newspaper exhi- 
bition at the Centennial Eposition Grounds. Through the liberality of a number 
of proprietors of prominent newspapers, funds were secured to erect a handsome 
pavilion for the accommodation of all periodical publications of this country. The 
exhibition is quite interesting, and well worthy a visit. The catalogue, whose title 
we give above, gives a great deal of information which is of interest to readers and 
advertisers, also sketches of the career of a number of prominent papers. 


Prof. Henry Buignet died in Paris, May 9th, aged sixty years. The deceased 
was born at Chelles, and soon after passing, in 1840, the examinations, as " phar- 
macien of the first class," purchased the store founded by Planch^ and followed 
the apothecary business for several years, without, however, losing sight of scien- 
tific pursuits. In 1850, he became connected with the "Journal de Pharmacie et 
de Chimie," as one of its editors; in 1855 he was elected general secretary of the 
Pharmaceutical Society of Paris, and in i860 he received the degree of doctor in 
sciences, having presented a thesis containing important original researches on the 
nature, origin and transformation of sugar in acidulous fruits. Since 1842 he had 
been attached to the Paris School of Pharmacy as lecturer (professeur agrege), since 
1 861 as assistant professor, and since 1 866 as professor of physics ; two years later he 
became a member of the Academy of Medicine, and in 1871 of the Council of 
Public Hygiene and Salubrity. The majority of his essays relate to the physics of 
chemistry 5 of his chemical investigations, conducted either alone or conjointly with 
Bussy, we may mention those on the composition of manna, on the influence of 
heat upon ferric salts, on the preparation, preservation and estimation of hydrocy- 
anic acid, etc. 



AUGUST, 1876. 



[Extract from an Inaugural Essay.) 

The ; principal use of fluid extract of ipecac is for making syrup, 
hence all preparations other than those which will make a good and 
permanent syrup, no matter what other good qualities they may have, 
should be rejected, and those which will make the most perfect syrup 
should be adopted. The officinal fluid extract of 1870 contains the 
inert resin 1 in solution, to the removal of which the " Pharmacopoeia '* 
of i860 paid so much attention. The prevailing opinion is, that it is 
not hard to improve on the present formula, for the preparation soon 
becomes very thick upon standing. 

The formula of Mr. Richard V. Mattison, published in the "Amer. 
Jour. Pharm.," 1873, P* 4^ J ? furnishes a good preparation, but unless 
there is extra care used in manipulation, the proper strength of the 
drug would not be represented. Moreover, the preparation itself is 
not entirely free from the objections common to this preparation, for 
in spite of the most careful manipulation it will precipitate. The syrup 
made therefrom shows a resinous separation after standing a long time, 
which seems to be the case, to a small extent at least, in the best pre- 
parations of this syrup. I believe, however, Mr. Mattison's prepara- 
tion to be almost as near perfect as can well be obtained. The work- 
ing formula can, however, be improved upon. 

The writer prepared fluid extract of ipecacuanha by four different 
processes, but in each case the drug was similarly treated as to fineness 

1 This so-called resin is most likely a decomposition product of the pectin con- 
tained in ipecacuanha. — Editor. 



Fluid Extract of Ipecac. 

{Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Aug., 1876. 

of powder, length of time in maceration previous to percolation (four 
days), packing in conical glass percolators, and temperature used in 
evaporation, as directed by the " Pharmacopoeia." Calculated for 16 
troyounces, which quantity, however, was not used except in one case, 
the menstrua and manipulations were as follows : 

1st. Acetic acid, f^i ; water, 3 parts ; alcohol, 1 part. The pow- 
der was moistened with the whole of the acetic acid, mixed with suf- 
ficient of the alcoholic menstruum ; after maceration as above stated,, 
exhausted with the menstruum (quantity obtained ?— Editor) ; the per- 
colate, after adding glycerin fsi, was evaporated to 1 pt. and filtered. 

2d. U. S. P. menstruum, exhausted and evaporated to nearly solid 
consistence, added sufficient water to make f^viii ; then added glycerin 
f5i, the whole thrown upon a filter and water passed through the filter 
till the filtrate measured fsxv, lastly added glycerin q. s. to make 1 pt. 
After allowing it to stand 24 hours, again filtered. 

3d. Menstruum Alcohol. — Percolated drug till half pt. of percolate 
was obtained ; set this aside, and continued the percolation with glyce- 
rin and water, 1 part of the former to 7 of the latter, until drug was 
exhausted ; the two percolates were then mixed and let stand for 24 
hours, the heavy precipitate filtered out and continuously washed ; 
filtrate, after standing 24 hours, again filtered, the second filtrate evapo- 
rated to syrupy consistence, then fsviii alcohol added to separate gum- 
my matter ; evaporated off about two-thirds of the alcohol, upon cool- 
ing it gelatinized. 

4th. Exhausted by U. S. P. process, threw the percolate into four times 
its bulk of water ; filtered at once, let stand 24 hours, and again filtered ; 
added the glycerin and evaporated to desired bulk. 

In each case the amount of resinous extractive matter, separated from 
the various percolates by evaporation or other means before the pre- 
parations were completed, was carefully noted as follows : 

From No. 1, . . 840 grains. 

" " 2, . . 160 " 

" u 3, . 265 " (the unfinished prep.) 

" " 4, . . 1065 " 

In order to test the merit of each menstruum as to its power of ex- 
hausting the drug, the dregs of each operation above named were ex- 
hausted with alcohol, the percolate evaporated to a solid extract and 

Am. Jour. Pharm. I 
Aug., 1876. J 

Fluid Extract of Ipecac. 


weighed. From the various dregs I obtained amounts of extract as> 
follows : 

No. 1, 120 grs., entirely soluble in alcohol, insoluble in water. 

" 2, 1 12 grs., soluble in alco., insoluble in water, gummy, resinous.. 

" 3, 138 grs., contained considerable glycerin, semi-fluid. 

u 4? 95 g rs *> f ree ly soluble in alcohol, insoluble in water. 
Of all these preparations I prefer most decidedly No. 4. The pre- 
paration represents the medical virtues of the drug, and the syrup made 
therefrom six months ago still remains clear and transparent, having no- 
signs of precipitation. 

The syrups made with the extract from process No. 1 precipitated 
slightly, but fermented ; with No. 2, a precipitate was formed soon 
after preparation ; no syrup made with No. 3. Of the fluid extracts,.. 
Nos. 1 and 2 have copious precipitates, but No. 4 is perfectly trans- 
parent, and free from sediment of any kind. 

I cannot see that there is any special advantage in using acetic acid ; 
there may be a disadvantage, which Prof. Maisch has once hinted at 
("Amer. Journ. Pharm.," Feb., 1871). He says " that acetic acid, in 
contact with organic bodies, is very liable to undergo decomposition \, 
and, since an organic body in such a condition is apt to predispose 
others with which it may be in direct contact to similar changes, it is 
a matter of great moment whether the addition of acetic acid to our 
officinal fluid extract of ergot and ipecac may not be more detrimental: 
than useful." On the contrary, Prof. Procter suggested that change 
seems to be arrested by the introduction of acetic acid to such prepara- 
tions, whose active principle in the natural condition seems to be held 
loosely by a weak acid, upon the principle (not entirely proven) of the; 
substitution of a more permanent acid for a less permanent one. Dr.. 
Squibb corroborates this idea in his note on " Ergot," published in the 
" Proceedings of the American Pharmaceutical Association," 1873, P v 
641, where he says that the addition of 1 per cent, of acetic acid to the 
fluid extract of ergot renders this liquid preparation permanent and 
without apparent change in activity, after keeping it for six years. My 
experiments with ipecac seem to substantiate the opinion of Prof. 
Maisch. The preparation containing acetic acid, after keeping it a 
few months, began to change ; both the fluid extract and the syrup, 
made therefrom by this time (six months) seem to have undergone^ 

340 Pharmaceutical Notes. { Am '£j^J^ 

thorough decomposition, while the other preparations exposed to the 
same influences are still in a good condition. 

I may as well state here, that Mr. Campbell's process was tried, but 
with no success whatever. The drug, it is true, was pretty well ex- 
hausted (this is what Mr. C. claims principally for his process), and 
very well represented in the product, which was at first very pretty and 
transparent, but in a short time the separation commenced and con- 
tinued on, until now it is a very muddy and unsightly preparation. 



[Abstract from an Inaugural Essay.) 

Medicated Waters.— The magnesia process has some advantage in 
making a clear preparation when finished, but, as the object is to have 
a pure medicated water, this process is not desirable, as the water is 
mot free from magnesia. 

The hot water method has not this objection. I have tried several 
modi operandi, of which the following is the most satisfactory : 

Pour boiling water in a strong bottle or, preferably, a demijohn, drop 
the requisite amount of oil on a folded filter, and put this filter in the 
hot water. Upon agitation the filter will be reduced to a pulp, and 
the oil readily dissolved. After standing a day or two, occasionally 
shaking it, filter, if necessary, through more pulp. 

This water is, perhaps, not quite as clear a preparation as the 
product of the magnesia process, but is unquestionably superior. 

In Camphor Water, the magnesia process may also be dispensed with 
to an advantage. I have obtained satisfactory results by powdering 
camphor with sufficient alcohol, then triturating with water gradually 
added, and filtering after several days. 

For Soap Liniment, the use of castor oil soap has been advocated in 
some journals, which would, no doubt, answer the purpose admirably. 
The following modified formula of the " Pharmacopoeia, " with my 
experience has worked well : 

Take of Castile soap, . . 4 troy ounces, 

water, . . 14 fluidounces, 

camphor, . . 2 troy ounces, 

ol. rosemary . . • h fluidounce, 

strong alcohol, . . 1 J pint. 

A \iT!\l^ m - } Pharmaceutical Notes. 341 

Grate the soap on a common grater, and, having mixed the water 
with \ pint of alcohol, pour this on the soap ; with occasional agita- 
tion it will dissolve in a short time. Dissolve the camphor and oil of 
rosemary in remainder of alcohol. Add this to the solution of soap, 
let stand some time and filter. The result is a preparation which will 
not precipitate. It is not as strongly alcoholic as the officinal, but it 
contains as much alcohol as is compatible (? Ed.) with it as a pre- 

Aromatic Sulphuric Acid. — The writer recommends S. Whittier's 
formula (" Am. Jour. Pharm.," 1874, p. 509). 

Syrup of Tolu. — In filtering the mixture of tincture of tolu, magne- 
sium carbonate and water, nothing but a flavored water is obtained, as 
the resin upon which the medicinal virtues depend is left in the filter. 
It is, therefore, a sacrifice of the medicinal virtues of tolu for the sake 
of getting an elegant preparation. I have tried to combine the medi- 
cinal as well as pharmaceutical properties, and believe to have suc- 
ceeded, by the following formula : Take the required amount of 
tincture of tolu, magnesium carbonate and a small quantity of sugar, 
rub them together and, instead of adding water, add simple syrup 
(hot), sufficient to make the desired quantity of syrup. After standing 
a short time, strain slowly through flannel. 

Syrup of Ginger may also be made advantageously by this process. 

,Syrupus Aurantii Cortic : s. — As this preparation is mostly used as a 
pleasant vehicle to disagreeable medicines, and especially those derived 
from iron, I submit a formula, which has the decided advantage in 
affording a preparation which will not be discolored by an iron pre- 
paration. One precaution is necessary, to use a fresh oil ; the best 
plan is to make it up into spirit of orange at once, one part of oil to 
fifteen of strong alcohol. 

Take spirit of orange, carbonate magnesium, sugar and water, and 
proceed in the same manner as for preparing the syrup of tolu of the 
" U. S. Pharmacopoeia," using the same proportions. 

Aromatic Syrup of Rhubarb, as prepared after the officinal process, is 
generally an unsightly preparation. 

I have found the officinal process, with some slight modification, 
renders a satisfactory preparation. After exhausting the rhubarb, &c. y 
with the alcoholic menstruum, rub it up in a mortar with a small 
quantity of carbonate of magnesium and some sand. Pack this 


Essence of Vanilla. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Aug., 1876. 

/loosely in a funnel and percolate it with the water that goes to make 
up the syrup, mixed with a small quantity of glycerin. Dissolve the 
--sugar in this last percolate, and, while still hot, add the aromatic 
'tincture of rhubarb. The result is a transparent syrup of a beautiful 
.red color, and it will not precipitate. 

Syrup of Ipecacuanha. — In simply mixing the fluid extract with syrup 
:a very unsightly preparation is obtained, the resin being precipitated. 
"The following formula affords a much nicer product : Mix the fluid 
extract with water, let stand and filter out the precipitated resin, dis- 
solve the sugar in the filtrate, and strain. 

Tincture Kino. — The writer recommends R. Rother's process 
(" Am. Jour. Pharm.," 1873, P- 39 8 )- 

Syrup of Squill. — An important point has been overlooked in the 
formula for this preparation. As vinegar of squill contains a con- 
siderable amount of albuminous matter, it ought to be first brought to 
the boiling point, when the albumen coagulates and can readily be 
skimmed off ; the sugar should then be dissolved at a low temperature. 


Georgetown, D. C, July 12, 1876. 
Editor American Journal of Pharmacy : — 

Enclosed please find formula for essence vanilla, which gives me- a 
better result than any I have ever tried : 

Take of vanilla beans, ... 8 oz. 

cut loaf sugar, . . . 72 oz. 

dilute alcohol a sufficient quantity. Slice and cut very fine the vanilla 
beans, then, with the sugar gradually added, reduce in a wedgewood 
mortar to a coarse powder (it should pass freely through a sieve of 20 
meshes to the inch), pack this into a cylindrical glass percolator, and 
c uery slowly displace with dilute alcohol 1 gallon of percolate. The 
"first of this percolate is a dark syrup, and, if the process is carefully 
conducted, the last few ounces of the gallon will pass almost void of 
color or vanilla flavor. Yours, &c, 

Chas. Becker. 

Am 'A J u g U .%876 arm '} Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. 




Assistant Professor of Botany in the University of Michigan. 
[Continued from page 300.) 


By this title is meant powders which have not been made by crush- 
ing or grinding. There are two pharmacopoeal substances of this sort 
in common use, viz., lupulina and lycopodium. 

I. LUPULINA (Fig. 7). 

Lupulin is a powder consisting of glands scraped from the surface of 
the bracts of the fertile cone of the hop. The powder is light and 
volatile. Its color is golden yellow, becoming more orange with age. 
It has the odor of hops and a resinous taste. When thrown in a flame 
it flashes. It is not wetted by water ; is readily so by alcohol or ether; 
with sulphuric acid it gives off a strong odor of hops. 

The glands consist each of two cup-shaped membranes, set edge to 

edge and enclosing a mass of 
brown-yellow resin. In the 
figure given three of these cups 
have been separated from the 
corresponding ones belonging 
with them. One of these is 
seen from the side. We look 
down on the two others. The 
fourth has the two hemispheres 
set together, but the hinder one 
does not appear plainly. The 
lower membrane is less conical 
than the upper, and is composed 
of flattened cells, radially ar- 
ranged. Sometimes a short 
•stalk is attached to it. The upper membrane is more delicate and less 
distinctly cellular than the lower. When fresh it is hemispherical, 
but as volatile portions inside the gland evaporate, this membrane con- 
tracts until it finally looks like a stem to the lower portion, the whole 
presenting the appearance of an umbrella, or rather a thick-stemmed 
toadstool. This change in shape in the gland, from nearly spherical to 

Fig. 7. Lupulina. 


Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. 

Am. Jour. Pharne 
Aug., 1876. 

toadstool-like, takes place as the powder becomes old and dried. The 
diameter of the glands is about j$tt. 

Along with these glands are found fragments of the surface mem- 
brane (epidermis), scraped off with them. The figure shows a frag- 
ment of this epidermis, with its cells and breathing pores. Separate 
fragments of resin, with occasional crystals of the same, are found. 
Hairs from the hop are also sometimes present. 

The fragments of epidermis and hairs are impurities, and should not 
be abundant. Lupulin sometimes contains sand. This can be easily 
separated by water, in which the powder floats, while the sand sinks. 
When the grains have so far dried as to become toadstool-shaped, and. 
orange-yellow in color, the powder has lost its valuable properties. 

2. LYCOPODIUM (Fig. 8). 

This is a very fine and volatile powder, made up of the spores (seed- 
like bodies) of the common northern club moss (Lycopodium clavatum). 
The powder is of a light yellow color, odorless and without taste. It 
does not mix with water, but readily mingles with alcohol, ether, chlo- 
roform, etc. Thrown into a flame, it flashes brightly, but in the mass 
it does not fire readily. It does not turn blue with iodine, nor with; 
iodine and sulphuric acid. 

Each grain or spore is a three-sided pyramid, with a convex base. 

It looks as if it was cut out of 
a sphere by three planes, each 
of which passed through the 
center. In one of the grains 
represented in the figure we are 
looking directly down on the 
apex of the pyramid. In two 
of the others, we view the pyr- 
amid a little from one side. In 
the remaining two, we are look- 
ing at the convex base of the 
grain. A groove runs down 
each angle from the apex. The 

T .. true nature of the markings on, 

Pig. 8. Lycopodium. 

the surface cannot be made out 

without some care. When carelessly focussed, the grains appear to 

be covered with hairs of peculiar shape, better seen at the edges. If 

Am A{g" r i8 7 h 6 arm '} Powdered Drugs under the Microscope. 345 

the grains are flattened out by pressure, it is found that the markings 
are really rather irregular six-sided meshes. The same thing can be 
seen, at a few points at a time, after the grains have been carefully 
brought into focus. 

Each grain consists of a single cavity or cell, surrounded by a double 
membrane. This is hard to demonstrate, but can sometimes be seen 
by crushing beneath the thin glass cover. The outer membrane or 
bag is thicker and brittle, and bears the markings ; the inner is thinner 
and more elastic and is smooth. Within the membrane is a thick 
liquid with drops of oil. The latter are easily recognized under the 
microscope. They have a spherical form, and appear bright, especially 
at the center, because the light is highly refracted by them. 

Lycopodium has the reputation of being frequently adulterated, but 
the writer, in the numerous samples he has examined, has always found 
it pure, except in one. This contained potato starch, easily recognized 
by its turning blue with iodine, and by its microscopical characters. In 
the case mentioned, fully one-third of the powder was starch. 

The adulterations given by Soubeiran and others will be given and 
briefly described, as they may be met in the United States. Ground 
wood can be recognized by its microscopical structure. It can be sep- 
arated by a fine sieve. Ground talc can be recognized by its shining^ 
flaky fragments, needing a microscope to distinguish them when ground 
fine. It can be separated by water, in which the talc sinks and the 
lycopodium floats. Sulphur consists of irregular or crystalline frag- 
ments, which have its characteristic yellow color. When lycopodium, 
with it as an adulterant, is burned, an odor of sulphurous acid is given 
off. When adulterated with dextrin, it becomes lumpy when exposed 
to moisture. Benj. Lillard has detected this adulteration in this coun- 
try. Lycopodium is also sometimes adulterated with pollen. That 
of the pines is characterized by being three-lobed — the larger, arched^ 
middle lobe connecting the two others. With this adulteration, the 
powder has a slight odor of pine. It does not seem to be injured for 
the uses to which it is put. One such adulteration, found in Ann 
Arbor, has been reported to me. The pollen of cat-tail flag, or Typba r 
is said to be also employed. The powder is then less inflammable, and 
has a deeper yellow color. The grain of pollen consists of four equal 

346 Monobromated Camphor. { Xm ^Z'^ m ' 



[From an Inaugural Essay.) 

The author has compared three different processes, which have been 
recently recommended for the successful preparation of monobromated 
camphor, namely, those of J. M. Maisch (" Am. Jour. Pharm.," 
1872, p. 337), J. U. Lloyd (Ibid, 1875, p. 165) and of Ed. Dubois 
( u Proc. Am. Phar. Assoc.," 1875, p. 328). The latter process is 
similar to that of Gault ("Am. Jour. Pharm.," 1874, p. 587), from 
which it differs mainly in the treatment of the crude article with 
carbonate of sodium, and in the asserted almost complete absence of 
any by-products. According to Dubois, 75 grams of camphor are 
introduced into a retort, and 80 grams of bromine at once added. 
The two substances unite with a slight elevation of temperature 
and become liquid. After standing for two or three hours the mix- 
ture is heated by means of a water bath, to 100° C, and when the 
reaction is completed the contents of the retort are treated with a 
warm solution of carbonate of sodium, then dissolved in boiling 
alcohol, filtered and allowed to crystallize. 

Having carefully manipulated according to each of the three pro- 
cesses, I feel justified in submitting the following results. My first 
experiment, made with the process of Prof. Maisch, confirms the 
result obtained by him in 1872. By the process of Mr. Dubois I 
was unable to obtain crystals of monobromated camphor. But, upon 
heating the resulting mass to 132 C. and treating with hot benzin, I 
succeeded in obtaining handsome, large, needle-shaped crystals. In 
making the experiment according to Mr. Lloyd, who directs a little 
over one atom of bromine to one molecule of camphor, I used an 
apparatus constructed upon the same plan as that employed in the first 
process, and found that the alkaline carbonate in the receiving vessel 
was but slightly affected, owing to the small amount of hydrobromic 
acid which was liberated. After many fruitless attempts to crystallize 
the brownish, oily mass resulting from this operation, either from 
warm alcohol or benzin, I transferred it to a retort, and, after heating 
it to 152 C, crystalized the contents from hot benzin, when crystals 
of monobromated camphor were obtained, and a large amount of an 
oily product. 

The experiments made have satisfied me that two atoms of bromine 
are required for one molecule of camphor, and that monobromated 
camphor is best formed at a temperature not below 132 C. 

Am 'A J u°g.?i87 h 6 arm '} Salicylic Acid— Benzoic Acid. 




The author's inaugural essay treats of the chemical history of salicy- 
lic acid ; of its solubility in various menstrua, its medicinal and other 
properties. The results of his experiments, made with the view of 
testing its preservative properties are contained in the following table : 

Preparation : Kept unchanged for the number of days mentioned below, after dissolving in i fl.oz. 

Pure Salicylic Acid. Glycerin. £ gr. Salic 

Prepa- , " . ' . Acid 

ration. 1-32 gr. 1-16 gr. 1-8 gr. 1-4 gr. 1-2 gr. f 5 1 f 5 ii f5i Glyc. 

Mucilago Acaciae 8 days 50 days 75 days 90 days 20 days 35 days 

Syrupus Rubi Idaei 10 days 70 days 

Syr. Papaveris, Ph. Germ. 6 days 12 days 20 days 

Syr. Limonis 7 days 30 days 

Infus. Digitalis 10 days 50 days 60 days 

In each case the experiments were made -with five or six vials, all of 
which were uniformly exposed, the temperature ranging between 70 
and 90 F. 



[Abstract from an Inaugural Essay.) 
For the purpose of investigating this property, claimed for benzoic 
acid, two samples were employed — one obtained by sublimation, 
according to the U. S. P. process, and the other purchased under the 
name of " artificial " benzoic acid, supposed to have been prepared 
from hippuric acid. A good commercial salicylic acid was also pro- 
cured, which, with the above-mentioned samples, formed the basis of 
the following experiments, in one-half of which both the sublimed and 
artificial benzoic acids were used and found to be identical in antiseptic 
power ; the remaining experiments were therefore made with the arti- 
ficial acid only. The results of the writer are condensed in the fol- 
lowing table : 

One part of 





2000 parts 
Infus. Buchu 

Spoiled in i 

after 60 

4000 parts 
Inf. Buchu 

Spoiled in 4 

Spoiled in 16 

8000 parts 
Inf. Buchu 

Spoiled in 5 

2000 parts 

Spoiled in 6 

Cloudy, but 
no change 
of color in 
16 days 

2000 parts 
Inf. Gentian, 

Spoiled in 19 

after 30 

1000 parts 
Solution of 

4000 parts 
Solution of 

[1 in 16 water J 

Spoiled in 12 

after 60 

Spoiled in 10 

Spoiled in 19 


Sium Latifolium. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Aug., 1876. 

To ascertain the power of salicylic and benzoic acids to arrest 
decomposition, they were each added in proportion of one part to 2000 
of separate portions of cider which had commenced to ferment. In 
both cases the fermentation, after twenty-four hours, had entirely 
ceased, and both were perfectly sweet at the end of fifty days, without 
the appearance of any further decomposition, a rather copious precipi- 
tate having separated at the bottom of each. 

It must be remembered that the infusions in the above experiments > 
without the addition of an antiseptic, would have commenced to decom- 
pose in about twenty-four hours, and the solution of albumen in about 
forty-eight hours. In all cases the operations were conducted in a 
moderately warm place, so as to favor a change as rapidly as possible. 

Having carefully compared the above experiments and their results, 
the following conclusions are submitted : 

1. That benzoic acid, sublimed or artificial, possesses valuable anti- 
septic properties. 

2. It has the power to arrest decomposition. 

3. Tannic acid (of buchu ?) does not interfere with its preservative 

4. As an antiseptic, it is superior, in many, if not in all cases, to 
salicylic acid. It also has the advantages of being more readily ob- 
tained in a state of purity, of being more soluble, and having a lower 
commercial value. 



{Abstract from an Inaugural Essay.) 

An umbelliferous plant, growing in California and along the Pacific 
coast, in damp and marshy places, commonly known as wild parsnip, 
was brought to the notice of the people there about three years ago, by 
a man being poisoned by eating some of the root. The case was 
treated successfully by C. B. White, M. D., U. S. A. (see " Amer. 
Jour. Phar.," 1873, P- 37 1 )- 

The root was subsequently sent to a former student of this College, 
Mr. Power, but arriving too late to be investigated during that session 
by him, was placed in the hands of Prof. Maisch, who very kindly gave 
it to me to investigate, and to obtain, if possible, the poisonous prin- 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Aug., 1876. 

Sium La t if Hum. 


Sium latifolium has a short, upright root stock, varying in size from 
one-half to two inches or more in length, and about the same in diam- 
eter, so it becomes almost spherical in outline ; bases of leaves are still 
attached to the crown. It presents a very rough, wrinkled appearance, 
and is of a gray or yellowish-brown color. It branches at once into a 
number of large roots, from four to twelve, and even more. These 
are of the same color, from ^ to J or f inch in thickness, and 2 to 6 
inches long, very much wrinkled longitudinally, somewhat flattened 
and contorted, and nearly uniform in thickness. On soaking in water, 
they become about twice as large. The dried root breaks with a very 
short fracture, is white inside, with a yellowish, spongy meditullium 
and numerous resin cells, which are plainly visible with the naked eye, 
scattered irregularly throughout the bark. The root has rather an 
agreeable aromatic odor, and a sweetish, aromatic and somewhat pun- 
gent taste. 

In attempting to separate the proximate principles of the root, an 
alcoholic tincture was made, concentrated and precipitated by water. 
In the clear aqueous solution, Trommer's test indicated the presence 
of much sugar, besides some coloring matter. The precipitated oleo- 
resin was distilled with water, the distillate containing some volatile oil, 
which was colorless, and had the aromatic odor and warm, pungent 
taste of the root. The soft residue was separated by hot petroleum 
benzin into a fixed oil and resin. The oil was thick, deep-red, of a 
slight odor and disagreeable taste, soluble in alcohol, chloroform, ether, 
oil of turpentine, benzin and carbonbisulphide. 

The resin was easily rubbed into a reddish-brown powder, which 
had a very slight odor and but little taste, fusible when heated, and un- 
crystallizble, soluble in alcohol, chloroform and ether, insoluble in 
benzin and bisulphide of carbon. This resin appears to be the poison- 
ous principle, since a small portion of it, given to a cat, produced in 
the course of two hours frothing at the mouth, considerable pain and 
then convulsions, from which, however, the cat recovered. This resin 
was not quite pure, since caustic potassa dissolved only a part, leaving 
a portion insoluble, and not fusible by heat. 

The root exhausted by alcohol was found to contain gum, albumen 
and pectin, but no starch. 

An alkaloid having been searched for, with negative result, in the 
alcoholic tincture, a decoction of the root was distilled with caustic 

350 Experiments with the Sunflower. { Am " A J ug?, r 'if 7 6 arm ' 

potassa. The distillate had an alkaline reaction, and its odor reminded 
of that of conium ; but, when neutralized with an acid, the distillate 
was neither precipitated by tannin nor by iodohydrargyrate of potas- 
sium ; it was probably ammonia contaminated with some odorous pro- 
duct of decomposition. 



Helianthus annuus is largely cultivated in Russia and Hungary, partly 
on account of the agreeable fixed oil and partly for the presscakes, 
which are a valuable fodder. i6,coo strong, healthy plants can be 
raised on one Bavarian acre (Tagwerk), which holds 3,407 square 
metres. By numerous experiments, it was ascertained that each indi- 
vidual weighs on an average kilos, while fresh, and of this weight 
I kilo is due to the seeds, one-half of the remainder (2J kilos) being stem, 
and the other half (2J kilos) leaves, receptacles and roots. The yield 
per acre is therefore 40,000 kilos of stem, 40,000 kilos of leaves, etc., 
and 4,000 kilos of fruit (seeds). The entire plant, deprived of the 
fruit, was cut fine, when, on drying in the air, it lost 68 per cent., and 
at iio°C. altogether 72*25 per cent., or nearly three-fourths of its 
weight ; the remaining 27*75 parts left on incineration 1*9 parts of 
ashes, in which were found 62*199 potassium carbonate, 2*930 sodium 
carbonate, 7*000 potassium chloride and 2*772 sodium chloride, or 
altogether 74*901 per cent, soluble in water, and 25*099 per cent, in- 
soluble in water, consisting of 4*210 calcium carbonate, 13*916 calcium 
phosphate, 0*672 aluminum phosphate, 0*323 ferric phosphate, 5*291 
magnesia and 0*687 silicic acid. By leeching the ashes and evaporat- 
ing the solution the resulting potash should contain 82*83 potassium 
carbonate ; however, in consequence of a partial reaction with the 
calcium phosphate, the amount of carbonate was found to have de- 
creased to 75*50 per cent., yielding still a good commercial potash. 

Different samples of fruit yielded from 41 to 60 per cent, of shells, 
and from 40 to 59 per cent, of kernels, the latter yielding 16*25 to 
28 per cent, of fixed oil, calculated for the weight of the fruit, or 40*6 
to 50*5 per cent., calculated for the kernel alone. The oil was ex- 

1 Abstract from a paper published in "Archiv der Pharmacie," April, and com- 
municated by the author. 

Am A J u g U !:'i876 a . rm '} Gleanings from the Foreign Journals, 351 

tracted by ether ; if obtained by pressure, of course considerably less 
would be obtained. 

From the results obtained, as above, the author concludes that the 
cultivation of the sunflower would be profitable, inasmuch as a Bava- 
rian acre would yield from the plants (deprived of the fruit) 1,525 kilos 
ashes, yielding 1,250 kilos of potash, and from the fruit, by extraction, 
870 kilos of oil with 3,120 kilos of residue, or by pressure, 720 kilos of 
oil and 3,280 kilos of presscakes. 

The air-dry fruit lost at no°C. 6 per cent, of water and yielded 
4*173 per cent, of ashes, 20*273 per cent, of which was soluble in 
water. It consisted of i4*475K 2 O,4*7i4Na 2 O,i*405Na,6*8i iCaO,. 
io*Q6oMgO,*227Al 2 3 , i.427Fe 2 O s , 2*i62Cl, 2*o86S0 3 ,3i.848P 2 5 , 
io*8nSi0 3 and i3*074CO 2 . 



Princewood bark, a febrifuge of the Bahamas. — The name of prince- 
wood is given to two small West Indian trees, Cordia gerascanthoides 
Kth., nat. ord. Boraginaceae, and Hamelia ventricosa, Sw. nat. ord. 
Rubiaceae. Both are noted for their timber, which is lightish brown 
with dark brown marking, and used for table and cabinet work. Sam- 
ples of princewood bark, recently received at the Kew Museum, were 
ascertained, by Mr. John R. Jackson, to be derived from Exostemma 
caribceum, R. S., nat. ord. Rubiaceae, which, according to Grisebach, 
is a fragrant shrub widely distributed in Jamaica, Antigua, Dominica, 
Trinidad, Cuba, Mexico and Guiana. The bark is smooth, of a deep 
reddish-brown, but somewhat greyish on the outside ; under an ordi- 
nary lens, numerous small crystals are seen distributed over its surface. 
It breaks with a short, woody fracture ; in flavor it is at first sweet, 
changing to an astringent bitterness ; it readily tinges cold water to the 
color of dark brandy, and imparts to it, in a few hours, opaqueness, a 
strong, earthy smell and bitter taste. It has been known as the Jesuits' 
bark of Jamaica, and is sometimes called the seaside beach. 

Exostemma floribundum and brachycarpum, likewise occurring in the 
West Indies, are called " quinquina piton," or " China caribaea " 
(Grisebach). E. cuspidatum, a small tree, native of Brazil, is there 
called lt quino do mato j" E. corymbiferum is a native of the islands of 

352 Gleanings from the Foreign Jonrnals. {^ m 'l°ll'^™ m ' 

Pacific Ocean, and E. philippicum indigenous to the Philippine Islands ; 
both have bitter medicinal barks. — Pharm. your, and Trans., 1876, 
February 26. 

Chelidonium majus. — E. Masing, of Dorpat, has made a large num- 
ber of determinations of the moisture and alkaloids contained in the 
herb, root and fruit of this plant, which was collected during five 
succeeding months, in periods varying from three to ten days. The 
amount of moisture varied in the herb between 80*35 and 91.34 per 
cent., and in the root between 6676 and 85*26 per cent. The total 
amount of alkaloids was determined by digesting 10 grm. of the fresh 
part of the plant with 25 cc. of acidulated water and 75 cc. of alcohol 
for 12 hours, the tincture evaporated to expel the alcohol and then 
diluted with water to 100 cc. 25 cc. of this solution was then titrated 
with Mayer's solution Jq, each cubic centimetre of which indicates 
0*001675 grm. chelidonina ; a separation of chelidonina and chelery- 
thrina was not attempted, owing to the large number of determina- 
tions made. The amount of test solution required varied between 
4*0 and 13*0 cc. for the herb, 4*4 and 16*2 cc. for the root and 5*3 
and 9*7 cc. for the fruit. 

The rapid decrease of the alkaloid at the beginning of flowering 
and the subsequent rapid increase appear to indicate that the alkaloids 
are used up for the formation of albuminous substances, which are 
deposited in the ovaries. Another cause of the vacillation is found in 
the weather, the consumption of the alkaloids exceeding their produc- 
tion during moist and rainy weather. A well-manured soil seems to 
favor their production, since the cultivated plant showed about double 
the amount of alkaloids, as compared with the wild plant, collected at 
the same time. — Archiv d. Phar., 1876, March, 224-228. 

Cotoin. — Julius Jobst received coto-bark from London in 1873 ( see 
Amer. Jour. Phar., 1875, p. 541), and obtained last year a crystalliza- 
ble body which appears to be the active medicinal principle of the bark. 
To obtain it the powdered bark is exhausted by ether, the tincture con- 
centrated by distillation, the residue poured into a capsule and mixed 
with six parts of warm petroleum ether (light petroleum benzin). 
After the separation of a large quantity of resin, the benzin solution is 
poured off and allowed to crystallize. The crystals are collected, 
pressed and several times recrystallized from water. Thus prepared, 
cotoin forms yellowish-white, light prismatic crystals, has a very biting 

Am 'Aug U ^is 7 h 6! rm *} Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. 353 

taste, is sparingly soluble in cold, but more in warm water, and readily 
soluble in alcohol, ether, chloroform and carbon bisulphide. Benzol 
and petroleum benzin dissolve it less readily ; it crystallizes from alco- 
hol in large sulphur-yellow prisms, fuses at I24°C. (255*2°F.), and 
dissolves in alkalies with a yellow color, being reprecipitated by acids. 
Nitric acid dissolves it with a blood-red, sulphuric acid with a brown- 
yellow, and muriatic acid with a yellow color. The aqueous solution 
is neutral, yields with subacetate of lead a bright, yellow precipitate, 
and with iron salts a brown-red coloration or, when concentrated, a 
blackish-brown precipitate, and reduces in the cold, silver and gold 
salts, also Fehling's solution — the latter rapidly on warming. Its com- 
position, according to an analysis by I. A. Todd, is C 21 H 20 O 6 , and 
of its lead compound C^H^Og-j^ (PbH 2 2 ). — Neues Repert. d. Phar., 
1876, 23-28. 

Taxina. — W. Marme obtained this poisonous alkaloid by exhausting 
the powdered seeds or leaves of Taxus baccata with ether, distilling 
off the ether and exhausting the residue with warm acidulated water. 
From the colorless filtrate, the alkaloid is precipitated by alkalies in 
snow-white flocks, which, when collected, form a white crystalline 
powder, which is soluble in acidulated water, alcohol, ether, chloro- 
form, benzol and carbon bisulphide, but not in petroleum benzin. 
Concentrated sulphuric acid colors it red ; other acids dissolve it with- 
out coloration. It is precipitated by all reagents characteristic for alka- 
loids, except by the chlorides of platinum, gold and mercury, and by 
platino- cyanide of potassium. It contains nitrogen, but crvstallizable 
salts could not be obtained. — Chem. Cent"albl., No. 11. 

The Inula camphor of J. Kallen ( u Amer. Jour. Pharm.," 1874, 298) 
has been further examined by the same chemist. It was obtained in 
the form of white crystals by distilling elecampane root with steam. 
On pressing the crystals between bibulous paper, and distilling the lat- 
ter with water, a yellowish liquid, alantol, is obtained, having an aro- 
matic taste and the odor of peppermint, and boiling near 200 C. Its 
composition is C 10 H 16 O. 

The crystals remaining after pressing, are repeatedly crystallized from 
dilute alcohol, when they form colorless prismatic needles, of a faint 
odor and taste, fusing at 66° C. and sublimable, readily soluble in alco- 
hol and ether, but slightly in water. It is the anhydrid of a new 
acid (alantsaure) of the formula C 15 H 20 O 2 ; the acid is C 15 H 22 O s , crys- 


354 Gleanings from the Foreign "Journals. { Am Aig U , r i^6 arm ' 

tallizes in fine needles, fuses at 90 — 91 C, and yields rather unstable 
crystallizable salts. — Ber. Deutsch. Che?n. Ges., 1876, 154 — 157. 

Hesperidin. — Emanuele Paterno and Giovanni Briosi have obtained 
this principle pure by a modification of Pfefrer's process, The cut and 
bruised oranges are covered with diluted alcohol, potassa solution is 
added in excess, the liquor filtered after two days and impure hesperidin 
precipitated by muriatic acid ; the precipitate is boiled with acetic acid 
for 8 or 10 minutes, and, after cooling, filtered from the dark resinous 
mass. After two days the filtrate commenced to separate white, fine 
needles and spheric crystals of nearly pure hesperidin, the separation 
continuing for several months. Four thousand ripe oranges yielded 
about 180 grams of hesperidin, which was also obtained from the ripe 
fruit of Citrus limonum and C. medica. It fuses between 243 and 
245°C, is nearly insoluble in the simple solvents, but soluble in alkalies 
and in anilin, from which it is precipitated by ether. — Ber. D. Chem. 
Ges., 1876, 250-252. 

Oil of Parsley. — TrommsdorfF obtained from 1 5 kilos parsley fruit 
90 grams, and by shaking the aqueous distillate with benzol, 16 grams 
more of the volatile oil, which was examined by E. von Gerichten. 
It commenced to boil at i6o°C, nearly all the terpen having come 
over below 210 . Between 270 and 290 a heavy yellowish-green, 
very refractive, uncrystallizable liquid was obtained, and above 300°C. 
brown decomposition products. By repeated rectification of the first 
portion, the pure, colorless terpen was obtained, boiling between 160 
and i64°C, and having an intense odor of parsley. Its specific gravity 
at I2°C. is '865, and its rotation power for yellow light and a column 
of 100 mm. = — 30*8°. Muriatic acid colors it gradually brown and 
destroys the parsley odor. Terpin and solid chlorhydrates could not be 
obtained. — Ibid., 258-260. 

The Conversion of Brucia into Strychnia by means of nitric acid, as re- 
ported by Sonnenschein ("Am. Jour. Phar.," 1875, p. 345), does not 
appear to be as readily effected. A series of experiments, made by 
A. J. Cownley, led him to the conclusions, that 1, if brucia be treated 
with enough dilute nitric acid to acidify the solution, there is no change 
in color, and caustic fixed alkalies precipitate the alkaloid ; 2, if enough 
acid be used just to form the red color without the aid of heat, there is 
a partial precipitation with akali ; 3, if gentle heat be used in presence 

Am A J u°g^'i87 h 6 arin '} Gleanings from the Foreign Journals. 3 5 

of acid in excess, more than sufficient to color the solution, caustic 
alkali fails to produce a precipitation, and if further heat be used after 
the acid has been added, yellow crystals soluble in alkali are deposited. 
These results point to the production of a nitro-compound, probably 
of Laurent's cacothelin ("Am. Jour. Phar.," xix, 237; xx, 115). 
The results further prove that the detection of brucia, and even of 
strychnia, in an analytical inquiry will become doubtful, if the presence 
of nitric acid, even dilute, be permitted. Phar. Jour, and Tram., 
April 22, p. 841. (See also papers by Rosengarten, Am. Jour. Phar., 
xx, 114; Baumert, Ann. d. Chem. u. Phar., lxx, 337, and Strecker, 
Co?np. Rend., xxxix, 49. 

Amyrin. — Eugene Buri obtained amyrin by treating elemi with cold 
90 per cent, alcohol, and recrystallizing the residue repeatedly from 
hot alcohol. It forms colorless silky needles, united to globular masses, 
fuses at 1 77 C. and congeals, far b^low the melting point, to a trans- 
parent, resinous mass, which crystallizes again from alcohol. It is 
soluble in ether, and freely in chloroform and carbon bisulphide. 100 
parts of alcohol of 92*5 per cent, dissolve at 16 C. (6o*8° F.) 3*6 
parts. Its alcoholic solution affects polarized light -j- 4*5°. It is sub- 
limable when carefully heated in thin layers. Ultimate analysis gave 
results agree'ng with the formula C 25 H 42 0=(C 5 H 8 ) 5 .H 2 0, to which also 
the acetyl substitution product points. By the action of nitric acid, 
oxalic and an amorphous resin acid were obtained. The products of 
destructive destination could not be separated into bodies of uniform 
boiling point \ the first portion had an agreeable odor and aromatic 
taste. — Buchner's N. Repert., 1876, 1 93-203. 

Alkaloid from Capsicum. — J. C. Thresh treated the fruit of Capsicum 
fastigiatum, deprived of their non-acrid seeds, with benzin, which 
yielded 20 per cent, of a red fatty substance, of intense acridity. This 
was dissolved in ether, the solution shaken with dilute sulphuric acid, 
t>he free acid partially neutralized with barium carbonate, filtered, evap- 
orated, and the oily residue treated with alkali and agitated with ether. 
On evaporating the ether, a small quantity of an oily alkaloid was 
obtained, smelling somewhat like conium, having a mawkish, persistent, 
but not acrid taste, and yielding crystals on being combined with HC1 
and S0 3 The alkaloid is undoubtedly the one observed by Felletar 
in 1868, and since then confirmed by Dragendorff and Fluckiger. — 
Pharm. Jour, and Trans., May 27, p. 941. 

356 Contributions from the School of Pharmacy , etc. { A Vu° g Ti8 7 h 6 a . rm ' 


Communicated by Prof. Albert B. Prescott. 

I. The Preparation of Liquor Ferri Nitratis. By F. T. Bower, Ph.C. 

This solution, made by the U. S. P. process, is variable in two par- 
ticulars, namely, in the proportion of iron to the solution, and in the 
proportion of acid to iron. From the last-named variation the ferric 
salt may be more or less basic or possibly normal. As with other ferric 
salts, the more basic the darker its color ; the normal salt in solution 
of U. S. P. strength being very light in color, and in presence of free 
nitric acid almost colorless. The " Pharmacopoeia " specifies its color 
as pale amber ; but if the iron be dissolved in strict compliance with 
the directions, the finished solution is darker than pale amber — and this 
is true of the solution commonly in use. By the addition of nitric acid 
it can be made pale, in proportion to the amount added. The causes 
of the variation lie, firstly, in the uncertain action of iron on the cold 
dilute nitric acid ; slight differences in temperature and differences in 
the equilibrium of the nitric acid change the decomposition products of 
the acid and the proportion of ferrous nitrate it can make. Even if 
the direction to avoid red fumes be so strictly obeyed that no trace of 
nitric oxide is formed, we may have the acid breaking up in at least 
three different ways, as follows : 

4 Fe+i0HNO3=4Fe(NO 3 ) 2 +NH 4 NO3+3H 2 O 
4Fe+ioHN0 3 =4Fe(N0 3 ) 2 +N 2 0+5H 2 
Fe+ 2HNO s = Fe(NO s ) 2 +2H 

Again, the action of the second portion of nitric acid, added to change 
the ferrous to a ferric salt, will be varied by conditions. The chief 
decomposition product is undoubtedly nitric oxide, but other products 
may occur to some extent. In using nitric acid to make ferric solu- 
tions of sulphate and chloride, we know, by experience, that the only 
exact direction is to add sufficient nitric acid, and afterward expel any 
excess ; but here, with a variable quantity of ferrous nitrate to act upon 
(to oxidize and then make normal), we have no guide but to heat to 130 
and add the two troyounces of nitric acid. 

The " Pharmacopoeia " directs that one fluidounce of the solution 
shall furnish " from eight to ten grains " of ferric oxide. Five sam- 
ples of the solution were assayed, the first two obtained at drug stores,. 

Am A J u° g u , r i8 > 76 arm '} Contributions from the School of Pharmacy^ etc. 357 

and the last three prepared for the purpose according to the U. S. P., 
but in smaller quantities : 

One fluidounce of No. 1 gave 12*69 grains ferric oxide, 
cc cc cc 2 u 1 1 *99 " u cC 

cc cc cc 2 u 16*93 " c ' tc 

cc cc cc m cc 11*28 tc " cc 

5 " 8-46 

CC CC CC r CC W.,.A " CC CC 

An attempt was made to prepare the solution of nitrate of iron by 
adding solution of tersulphate to an alcohol solution of potassium 
nitrate, but it was found that with the precipitate of potassium sulphate 
was a precipitate of basic ferric nitrate. This, on warming to expel 
the alcohol, became so basic as to be insoluble in water. The experi- 
ment was repeatedly varied, without full success. 

The following process was then devised by calculation and experi- 
ment, and in repeated trials it made a satisfactory liquor, one fluidounce 
of which, in each instance, gave very nearly ten grains of dry ferric 
oxide : 

Take of solution of tersulphate of iron, . . 7 fluidounccs 

water of ammonia, . . .8^ fluidounces 

nitric acid, . . 3 troyounces and 145 grains 

distilled water, . . .a sufficient quantity 

To the water of ammonia, mixed with twelve fluidounces of water, 
add, stirring constantly, the solution of tersulphate of iron, previously 
mixed with twelve fluidounces of water. Filter and wash the pre- 
cipitate until the washings render solution of chloride of barium only 
slightly turbid. Let the precipitate drain and dry till it can be removed 
from the filter without loss. To two troyounces and 250 grains of 
the nitric acid, mixed with an equal volume of distilled water, add, 
without heat and stirring constantly, the precipitate of ferric hydrate 
until it no longer dissolves. Filter the solution, and wash the filter 
with repeated small portions of distilled water, adding the washings to 
the filtrate. Then add to the solution the remainder of the nitric acid 
and (after it has attained a pale amber color) add enough distilled water 
to make the liquid measure 36 fluidounces. 

One fluidounce of this solution should furnish 10 grains of dry ferric 

358 Contributions from the School of Pharmacy , etc. { A %^3^ m 

II. Comparison of four Processes for the Morphiometric Assay of Opium. By James- 
Lynn, Ph.C. 

Four samples of opium, obtained at different reputable pharmacies,, 
were each assayed by the four processes. The opium was dried, to 
lose no more weight, at ioo°C. 


No. i. 

No. 2. 

No. 3. 

No. 4 


Procter's Staples' process, 1 

I 1*22 



12 69 


Mohr's process, 2 

1 1 *40 





Hager's Jacobson's process, 3 






Dragendorff's Mayer's process, 4 





Of the three gravimetric methods, Staples' gives much the purest and 
best crystallized morphia, being nearly colorless and readily detached 
and gathered. For this reason Staples' is preferred by the operator to 
Mohr's or Hager's method, unless time is an important object. Hager's 
is the quickest and simplest, being completed in four to six hours,, 
while the product is about as pure as Mohr's ; the crystals from both 
these methods being imperfect and colored. The yield is greater in 
Hager's than in Staples' process, but very likely the amount of absolute 
morphia is not much greater. 

In any gravimetric method the morphia separates by crystallization 
slowly, and, we must suppose, approximately, and that a weighable 

lu Proc. Am. Phar. Asso.," 1870, p. 129; "Am. Jour. Phar.," 1871, p. 65. 
(First method given by Procter.) The plan of the U. S. P. preparation of morphia.- 

2 "Annal. der Chem. u. Phar.," B. 35, S. 1205 " U. S. Dispensatory." 
Third method given by Procter, as above quoted. 

3 "Hager's Untersuchungen," II, 1765 "Am. Jour. Phar.," 1871, p. 224 
Founded on Mohr's. 

The Voli metric Method. Mayer, "Am. Jour. Phar.," 1863, p. 20; Dragen- 
dorfF, " Werthbestimmung starkwirkender Droguen," p. 86. This method was- 
employed as follows : Three grams dried powdered opium were exhausted with 
benzene, the adhering benzene fully evaporated, the dry powder macerated in water 
for 12 hours, then percolated on a filter with water until the water passed colorless. 
The dilute percolate acidulated with sulphuric acid, and the reagent added from 
the burette in portions so limited as to prevent excess, allowing the precipitate to 
subside after each addition. At intervals, a drop of the clear supernatant liquid is 
taken on a dark-colored glass slide, with a drop of reagent from the burette, this 
portion being rinsed into the tested solution each time until the addition is com- 
pleted. Each c.c. of a solution of 13*546 grams mercuric chloride and 49*8 grams 
potassium iodide in water to one litre, precipitates o'02 grams morphia. 

A % J u° g u, ;'i8 7 h 6 arm "} Contributions from the School of Pharmacy, etc. 359 

proportion of morphia remains in the mother liquors of the gravimetric 
processes is strongly supported by the results of the volumetric method. 
Here weighable portions of the alkaloid do not escape determination, 
and no non-alkaloidal matter obtains determination. Other alkaloids, 
however, may be included, notwithstanding the use of benzene. Also, 
the execution of the volumetric process may suffer appreciable variations. 
At any rate, it must be held that the greatest exactness is attainable 
by the volumetric method. 

III. Valuation of Powdered Ipecacuanha Root and Do ver s Powder, as found in 
the Market. By T. M. Stewart, Ph.C. 

All the specimens were obtained from different retail drug stores in 
Detroit and Jackson, Michigan. 

The ipecacuanha was assayed by the process lately recommended by 
Dragendorff, 1 the drug being extracted first by acidulated water, and 
then by alcohol, the pectin filtered out from the concentrated solution, 
when the alkaloid is either determined volumetrically by potassium 
mercuric iodide or extracted by chloroform or benzene in presence of 
barium carbonate, and the residue thereof weighed. (One c.c. Mayer's 
solution precipitates 0*0189 gram emetia.) 

Both volumetric and gravimetric ways were found to give concur- 
ring duplicate results, and the two ways gave results corresponding 
closely with each other ; but the volumetric method leaves less danger 
of loss in operating. Two grams were taken each time. 


No. 1. 175 per cent, emetia. No. 5. 1*90 per cent, emetia. 

" 2. 1-45 " " " 6. 2*00 " " 

" 3. 2-10 " " " 7. 1*90 " " 

Average, 1-84 per cent, emetia. 
All the numbers were examined microscopically and chemically for 
adulterations, especially for almond meal, chalk and antimonium potas- 
sium tartrate, but no adulterations were found, except a little extrane- 
ous woody fibre. 

The compound powder of ipecacuanha was assayed as follows : 2 
Three grams of the powder were extracted with 85 per cent, alcohol 

1 " Werthbestimmung einiger starkwirkender Droguen " (1874) S. 37. 

2 " DragendorflTs Werthbestimmung," S. 96. 

3 6o 

The History of some Drugs. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. 
Aug., 1876. 

(the residue tested for adulterations) ; the dry residue from the alcohol 
dissolved in acidulated (sulphuric acid) water, filtering if necessary, and 
the narcotina removed by washing the acid solution with ether. After 
addition of excess of barium carbonate, the solution is now extracted 
with benzene (several portions), the residue from evaporation of the 
benzene being weighed as emetia (confirming by dissolving in acid water 
and titrating with potassium mercuric iodide). The solution exhausted 
with benzene is washed with amylic alcohol (several portions), and the 
residue from evaporation of the amylic alcohol weighed as morphia 
(confirming volumetrically by potassium mercuric iodide after dissolv- 
ing in acidulated water). The ether and the amylic alcohol should be 

Dover's powder. 



I, 0'20 

per cent. 



1*03 per cent 


2, 0'l6 




I '00 



3, 0-2 3 







4,- 0*20 







5, 0-13 







6, 0-13 




1 -oo 



7, 0-26 







8, 0-23 







;e, 0-19 




1 -oi 


U. S. P. standard, 



The average of 

0*19 per 

cent, in 



cent, emetia in ipecacuanha. 

All the samples of Dover's Powder were examined for adulterations, 
organic and inorganic, but none were found. 



In writing our cc Pharmacographia," my late friend Hanbury and 
myself have endeavored to trace the history of each substance as far 
back as possible, and to ascertain the date of the introduction into 
pharmacy of drugs — especially of those furnished by foreign countries. 

1 Abstracted from the author's 
Halle, 1876, p. 96. 

Documente zur Geschichte der Pharmacie. 

Am. Jour. Pharnr ) 
Aug., 1876. i 

The History of some Drugs. 


Many curious facts are connected with the way of their propagation 
throughout Europe, both in early and in the middle ages. As to Eng- 
land, I am entitled to suppose that there are existing but an extremely 
limited number of sources of valuable information about the subject 
under notice which had escaped the careful investigation of my lamen- 
ted friend. As to the continent, there is in the library of the British 


Museum an interesting volume marked — - — - (Pharmacopoeia), and 

entitled " Valor she taxatio omnium materierum medicarum . . . quae in 
qfficind pharmaceutica Swinphordiand venundantur" printed at Giessen, 
1614. This is the tariff of drugs and compound medicines which were 
to be met with in the pharmaceutical shop of Schweinfurt on the Main, 
then one of the numerous free cities of the old German Empire. The 
establishment (Apotheke) was not a private business, but remained from 
A.D. 1412 until the year 1803 the property of the commonwealth of 
that imperial town, and was managed — under the superintendence of the 
physicians — by an apothecary appointed by the magistrate. The tariff 
was therefore settled by this authority. The same may be said with 
regard to many other German towns, a fact which, no doubt, depends 
upon a good deal of public interest already devoted in those early 
times to pharmaceutical matters. Thus the volume alluded to con- 
tains not only the " tax " of Schweinfurt, but also those of Bremen 
(1644), of Basel (1647), °f Rostock (1659), of Quedlinburg (1665), 
and Frankfurt (1669). Daniel Hanbury at once appreciated the useful- 
ness of these documents, which we subsequently made free use of, as 
may be seen from several pages of the " Pharmacographia " (77, 177, 


It was evident that similar medicine tariffs must have been in vigor 
throughout the numberless States, so very different in size, which were 
formerly termed the German Empire; and not only tariffs, but most 
of them had their own pharmacopoeia and medico-pharmaceutical laws. 
Since my late friend first drew my attention to the said volume in the 
British Museum, I have succeeded in perusing — for the same purposes 
— somewhat more than one hundred of similar lists or tariffs of German 
towns, ranging from the year 1558 down to the middle of the last cen- 
tury. They are scattered in various public libraries throughout Ger- 
many, but I learn from A. N. von Scheerer's " Literatura Pharmaco- 
poearum," Leipzig, 1822, p. 232, that there are about forty more of 


The History of some Drugs. 

Am. Jour. Pharrci. 
Aug , 1876. 

the same periods which I have not yet been able to consult. No other 
country, as far as I know, can boast of such a number of similar docu- 
ments, which I think must be considered as an evidence of a somewhat 
advanced state of the pharmacy in those ages, although the fact may 
partly be explained by the extreme, and we may say absurd, self-gov- 
ernment then prevailing among the Germans. In 1872 at last the way 
has been cleared for ever by the " Pharmacopoea Germanica." 

In abstracting the said tariffs, I have met with a good deal of informa- 
tion which may some day prove useful to any author engaged in the 
history of Pharmacy. I have therefore communicated my notes to the 
Archiv der Pharmacie, volumes 204 and 205 (1875 and 1876), from 
which they are reprinted under the title " Documente zur Geschichte 
der Pharmacie," Halle, 1876, 96 pages. A few pages from this pam- 
phlet may be permitted to be quoted in this place in order to show that 
they afford even some further elucidation to questions which had been 
treated with a certain amount of care in the " Pharmacographia." The 
sources from which the following facts have been borrowed are pointed 
out in the pamphlet : 

Balsamum Canadense is stated (" Pharmacographia," p. 553) to have 
been noticed in England A.D. 1761, but in my " Documente," p. 92, 
it is found to have been sold at Strassburg as early as 1759 as a current 
article of the pharmacy of that country. 

Balsamum Copaivce. — Its history is somewhat exhaustively traced 
out in "Pharmacographia," p. 201, and also (p. 184) that of a certain 
white American balsam, the latter being derived from several species 
of Myroxylon and Myrocarpus. It would appear from some tariffs 
abstracted in the " Documente," pp. 47, 52, 65, 68 and 69, that in 
some cases Balsamum Americanum, s. Indicum, s. Mexicanum album was 
probably intended for copaiba — for instance, in the private tariff of an 
apothecary of the city of Gorlitz, of the year 1629. But in the Phar- 
macopoeia of Amsterdam, A.D. 1636, editio sexto, Balsam. Copce. yvez is 
distinctly enumerated. The authors of the " Pharmacographia " had 
not been able to find it mentioned in English pharmacy previous to the 
year 1677. 

Balsamum Peruvianum. — Perhaps Balsamum Indicum, of the tariffs of 
1605 an d J 6o7, quoted in the tC Documente," pp. 35 and 36, may mean 
Peru balsam ; it is, however, expressly termed Balsamum Peruvianum 
in the tax of Mainz (Mayence), A.D. 1609, and what is more curious, 

Am A J u g U ^?7 h 6 ar^, "} T ^ History of some Drugs. 363 

the pods of the tree, Fructus balsami indict, are met with in the lists of 
Wittenberg in 1646, and of Nordhausen, 1657. These pods are still 
occasionly imported on account of the fragrant resinous contents of the 
large ducts around the seed. Their fragrance, which I am told is 
much appreciated by perfumers, is quite different from that of the 
balsam itself (see " Pharmacographia," p. 184). Balsamum Jndicum 
nigrum fluidum is another name frequently applied to Peru balsam 
Balsamum Hispanicum ("Documente," pp. 45 and 49) may rather mean 
balsam of tolu. It is hardly possible to say what was Balsamum Amer- 
icanum s. Indicum verum, p. 41. 

Balsamum hispanicum siccum seu americanum resinosum in the tariff of 
Schweinfurt, 4th edition, 1644 (" Documente," p. 49), as well as Bal- 
samum Indicum durum of Ulm, 1648 (" Documente," p. 53), cannot be 
doubted to mean balsam^of tolu. The product of Myroxylon Pereirez y 
which is exclusively prepared on the balsam coast of San Salvador, 
having been formerly carried to Callao, the chief port of Peru during 
the Spanish dominion, the name of Peru balsam was given to it. This 
may account for the appellation of Balsamum hispanicum, which appears 
to have been bestowed upon the balsam of tolu, inasmuch as it used to 
be immediately shipped for Spain — as it is still — from the ports of New 

The earliest express mention of Balsams tolutawww, I have met 
with in pharmaceutical tariffs occurs in that of the city of Frankfurt of 
1669, quoted in the "Documente," p. 65. From what we stated in 
the " Pharmacographia," p. 177, it is probable that the drug was then 
likewise used in England, but there is no proof of the fact as far as I 
can see ; I would be glad, however, to be corrected in this opinion. 

Benzoin began to be introduced as a commercial article in the begin- 
ning of the sixteenth century ( u Pharmacographia," p. 362). It was 
abundantly obtainable in the middle of that century, for Hieronymus 
Cardanus states in his work, " De la Subtilitk," French translation,, 
1556, p. 160, that " belzoi est de vile prix 'pour l'abondance." Ben- 
zoin, according to the custom of that period, was then submitted to 
destructive distillation, by which it yielded benzoic acid, which was 
first noticed by the famous French astrologer, Michel de Nostredame, 1 
about the year 1556. This preparation appears to have quickly come 

1 " Excellent et moult utile Opuscule a touts necessaire qui desirent avoir cognois- 
sance de plusieurs exquises receptes/'' 1556. 

364 The History of some Drugs. { Am Z° g u , r - l8 P 7 h 6? rm 

into more general use; it occurs in the list of Gorlitz (east of Dresden) 
of 1629, under the name of Benzoi /lores. 

Arnotto, the pulp of the fruit of Bixa Orellana, the well known dye, 
occurs in tariffs of Wittenberg, 1646, Budissin, 1660, Leipzig, 1669, 
under the name of Orlian, which it still bears in German. 

Cascarilla bark. — The Bahamas having been in the possession of the 
English from 1629 to 1641, the authors of the " Pharmacographia" sup- 
posed it to have been first introduced in Europe by way of England, but 
no evidence at all has been found to prove the correctness of this sugges- 
tion. The said islands were occupied in 1641 by the Spaniards, and to 
them apparently is due the introduction of this bark. It bears a certain 
resemblance to quills of cinchona barks, and was, therefore, first 
noticed by the name of China nova, or cascarilla, which designations 
were, no doubt, of Spanish origin. It is said, however (" Documente," 
p. 76), that it had first been mentioned in the pamphlet — " De machinis 
fumiductoriis," Hamburg, 1686, by J. A. Stisser, Professor in the 
University of Helmstedt, near Brunswick. I have not seen this pam- 
phlet, nor that of V. G. Salat, of Valencia, Spain — " Unica quaestiun- 
•cula, in qua examinatur pulvis de Buarango vulgo Cascarilla in curatione 
tertianae." Valentiae, 1692. Both these pamphlets appear to be ex- 
tremely rare, the first being not even quoted in Haller's " Bibl. Botan- 
iica." But in the list of Minden, 1691 (" Documente," p. 74,) I have 
found China nova, together with China de China — /. e., true Cinchona. 
There can be no doubt that this refers to cascarilla, for in another tariff 
of 1694 (" Documente," p. 74), published at Gotha, Cortex Chinee 
noevez seu Schacorillae is quoted as well as in several other lists abstracted 
in the " Documente." 

Catechu is said in the " Pharmacographia" to have been unknown in 
Europe until the latter half of the seventeenth century ; yet in the tariff 
of Wittenburg of 1646, Catechu seu t?rra Japponica is met with. It 
again occurs in several other tariffs of the same century, and is always 
quoted at very high prices.' In 1666, at Magdeburg, catechu was much 
more costly than benzoin, balsam of Peru, camphor, opium, mastix, 
etc. (" Documente," p. 64). Even in 1780 the wholesale price in 
London was .£20 per cwt. ; to-day the commodity fetches about i%s. 

The earliest mention of Cinchona bark — China China — is found in 
the tariffs of Leipzig and Frankfurt of the year 1669. In England it 
had begun to be known about 1655. 

Am. Jour. Pharm. ) 
Aug., 1876. J 

The History of some Drugs. 


One of the most curious things is the occurrence of coals, carbones 
petrce, among the drugs of the tariff of the city of Freiberg, in Saxony, 
A.D. 1680. 

Cacao seeds and chocolate were to be found with German pharma- 
ceutists as early as 1656 and 1683 (" Documente," pp. 53 and 69),, 
and Coffee — " Bon Com* Grana" — in 1683 in the pharmaceutical office 
of the court of Dresden. It is much more striking to learn from the 
tariff of the city of Nordhausen, near Gottingen, that in 1657 — Herba 
thece — was there a pharmaceutical aiticle. It also occurs in the tariff 
of Liegnitz, in Silesia, in 1662, under its Chinese name, Herba shak ; 
it then commanded a most extraordinary price, namely, fifteen florins a 

Gamboge. — I have afforded some new information about the history 
of that drug, as may be seen in the u Documente," pp. 41, 43, 44, 46,, 
48, etc. In the list of Frankfurt, of 161 2, Gutta gemou (gamboge) is 
stated to be a purging dried juice, coming from the kingdom of Patana 
in India. The meaning of Gutta gemou is explained in the " Pharma- 
cographia," p. 77. Patana is a country and a port on the eastern coast 
of the peninsula of Malacca, where the Dutch established a settlement 
in 1602, and were followed there in 1612 by the English. Gamboge 
may have been imported there from the countries on the opposite shore 
of Cambodja, where it is still colleted. 1 Its early introduction in 
Europe is, no doubt, due to the Dutch. In the tarif